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Branford to prohibit plastic bags beginning December 12

BRANFORD – Beginning Thursday, December 12th, single-use plastic bags will be prohibited in Branford.

“I’ll do anything I can to not pay the 10-cents,” said Dana Chadwick.

Reusable bags have become normal in the state of Connecticut. The 10-cent tax on single-use plastic bags implemented by the state in August has curbed their use drastically.

“My sisters really, really do love the bag tax,” said Luke Boyle. “Plastic bags, plastic forks, anything plastic really.”

The ordinance voted on back in June is intended to improve the environment and welfare along Branford’s coastline, marine life, and residents. For some local businesses like Richlin’s the switch to paper isn’t difficult.

“Richlin’s has been around for a long time. I’m sure they used them before and back to paper now,” said Cathleen McNally.

Richlin’s quickly made the switch to paper when the state initially implemented its bag tax. Branford’s ordinance allows for businesses to charge a 10-cent fee for recyclable paper bags. Something they say Richlin’s owner doesn’t believe in doing.

“Growing up they were always paper bags. There weren’t plastic bags. We weren’t charged for them so I can’t understand why the stores would want to charge their customers now for them,” said McNally.

Customers in Branford have found the switch to reusable bags easy.

“They last a long time if you take care of them and don’t overstuff them,” said Latisha Petway. “You can get quite a bit of wear out of them.”

And the inconveniences minor

“Only when I forget my bags in the car,” said Boyle.

While some states and businesses around the country are doing away with other plastic items like straws, some think Connecticut isn’t far behind.

“Plastic will be gone in the next couple of years,” said Boyle.

Branford is one of over 20 towns in the state that has voted to or has considered a ban on single-use plastic bags.

If a retailer chooses to ignore the ordinance they will face a $150 fine after an official warning.

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