General Assembly debating bills on bag taxes
Before the spring legislative session is over, Illinois residents might find it pays -- literally -- to hang onto those bags you get in the store.
That’s because the General Assembly is debating bills that would put a tax on the bags that stores put your groceries and other merchandise in as you check out.
The proposals vary. Gov. J.B. Pritzker called for a 5-cents per bag tax, but only on plastic bags. A bill favored by environmentalists would put a 10-cents a bag tax on all types of single-use bags, whether plastic, paper or made of compostable material. A third proposal applies a 7-cents a bag tax, also on all types of bags.
“Carry-out bag fees are the best possible policy to reduce usage of the bags,” said Jen Walling, executive director of the Illinois Environmental Council. “Plastic bags basically never biodegrade. They cause issues in our environment not only of litter, but also economic issues in terms of closing recycling machinery, agricultural machinery, sewer drains.”
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