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New York Begins Enforcing Ban On Plastic Bags

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- New York's single-use plastic bag ban is back in effect.

It was passed last year and was briefly on the books in March, but was then put on hold during a court challenge.

As of Monday, it's once again the law of the state, CBS2's Tony Aiello reported.

It is a mixed bag -- pun intended -- at the Mamaroneck Avenue Food Market in White Plains. Prepared food taken to go can still be placed in so-called single-use plastic bags. However, groceries and other products on the store shelves cannot, and under the law must go in paper bags.

"We will comply right away. I will start using paper bags ASAP, right away," market owner Felix Castillo said.


Next door at the CVS, plastic bags are gone. Only paper bags are available at the checkout.

Retailers, including Whole Foods, went paper only some time ago.

The New York law was passed in 2019 and briefly took effect seven months ago before a judge put it on hold in order to hear legal challenges.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is counting on you, the consumer, to help enforce the new law. There is a form on its website, along with a phone number you can use to report violators of the plastic bag ban.

Supporters say the law will reduce waste that creates litter and threatens the environment, including marine life.

Some municipalities are allowing stores to charge a nickel for paper bags.

"There is an inconvenience, but you have to sacrifice something for the planet, right?" one shopper said.

FLASHBACK: Mixed Reactions Greet First Day Of Plastic Bag Ban In NYC

Shoppers are being urged to carry reusable bags.

"Sadly, I never remember to bring my own. I wish I did. Some places, though, when you bring your own, they say you have to pack it yourself," shopper Marlene Varses said.

Some in the grocery industry still hope to tie the bag ban up in court, but for now it's in effect.

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