Tacoma City Council votes to ban plastic bags

TACOMA, Wash. — The Tacoma City Council has voted to ban the use of thin plastic bags by grocery stores and other businesses.

The Tacoma News Tribune reports the council voted 8-1 in favor of the measure after hours of discussion Tuesday.

The law will require retailers to charge a five-cent fee to customers for paper bags and other carryout bags they offer. That fee will be kept by the retailer.

Joe Lonergan, the lone council member to vote against the ban, said he opposed government charging a fee that it then allows someone else to keep.

The ordinance prohibits plastic bags less than 2.25 millimeters thick, but includes an exemption for traveling shows and events at the Tacoma Dome and convention center.

The ordinance will go into effect in one year.