Bill that bans single-use plastic bags in Washington signed into law


OLYMPIA, Wash. — Gov. Jay Inslee signed a bill into law Wednesday that bans single-use plastic bags at grocery stores across the state.

The legislation bans retailers from handing out plastic bags and adds an 8-cent fee for paper bags. It goes into effect Jan. 1, 2021.

Reusable plastic bags will be subject to an 8-cent fee, which will increase to 12 cents in 2026.

The statewide fee of 8 cents for paper bags will supplant jurisdictions with existing 5-cent fees, including Seattle.

People who rely on food assistance programs will not pay the fees.

Lawmakers hope the fee will dissuade customers from purchasing bags, while using the revenue as “cost recovery” for retailers who give up cheaper plastic bags.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.