Assembly passes changes to plastic bag ban

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - The Anchorage Assembly passed an amendment, proposed by Assembly Member Crystal Kennedy, Tuesday bringing two big changes to the ordinance banning plastic bags.

The first change makes it so restaurants no longer have to charge customers for alternative bags. Some drive-thru customers were caught by surprise shortly after the ban went into effect when charges for bags that had previously been free started showing up on their receipts.

The second change eliminates the requirement that businesses offer alternative bags.

“The strict compliance required of the ordinance became virtually impossible for some vendors, unrealistic for others, and forced a change to their business practices of some that they never had a need for prior to the new law,” Kennedy said. “Even with the recent change there is still confusion.”

Businesses that choose to offer alternative bags will still be required to charge a minimum of 10 cents per bag, however, the assembly is considering an amendment in its next meeting that would do away with that requirement.

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