Residents of Barrington, Rhode Island, vote to draft ban on plastic shopping bags, charge US$0.05 for recyclable paper bags; Westport, Connecticut, currently only New England community to have banned plastic bags

BARRINGTON, Rhode Island , July 30, 2012 () – The leaders of a Rhode Island town have voted to explore the idea of banning plastic shopping bags.

The Barrington Town Council voted Monday to direct town staff to draft a proposed ban.

A recommendation by the town's Conservation Commission suggests banning the plastic grocery store bags and charging shoppers without reusable bags 5 cents for recyclable paper bags. Plastic dry cleaning bags wouldn't be included in the ban.

Town Council President June Speakman says she's unsure what form a final proposal might take. She says it's likely to be this fall before the council would vote on enacting a ban.

Supporters say plastic bags create litter and take up valuable landfill space.

Small stores support the ban. It could save them money.

Westport, Conn., is the only New England community to have banned plastic shopping bags.

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