Senate panel to consider bill banning plastic bags

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Senate panel is set to consider legislation that would ban the use of plastic checkout bags by grocery stores and other retailers statewide.

The Senate Environment Committee is holding a hearing Wednesday. The group Environment Rhode Island delivered a petition to lawmakers in January with 10,000 signatures in support of a ban.

Supporters say the bags end up strewn about neighborhoods and parks and pose a threat to the environment, especially Narragansett Bay.

A similar bill didn't get a vote last year.

Barrington in 2012 became the first municipality in Rhode Island to ban plastic bags. Cities including San Francisco, Los Angeles and Seattle have also done so.

A House committee recently held a hearing on the bill and recommended it be held for further study.

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