Virginia shoppers can continue using plastic bags in the Commonwealth without being charged a fee.
Virginia legislators recently defeated a proposal aimed at curbing pollution by imposing fees on the use of plastic bags, but bill sponsors are vowing to bring the issue up again next year.
A measure that would have required stores to charge customers a 5-cent fee on paper bags and disposable plastic bags died last week
in a House of Delegates subcommittee after strong opposition from the retail and chemical manufacturers' lobbies.
A similar 5-cent fee exists in the District, and a Maryland delegate says he plans to introduce a similar bill in his state soon, according to Germantown Patch.
Virginia Dels. Adam Ebbin and Joe Morrissey said their legislation was an effort to encourage people to change their habits and cut down on waste. Under Ebbin's bill, shoppers who preferred disposable bags could choose to pay an extra nickel, and proceeds would have gone to a state water-quality fund. Morrissey's bill would have imposed a 20-cent tax on plastic bags, according to the Virginian-Pilot.
Many nations and several U.S. cities have adopted plastic-bag taxes or other restrictions.