Assemblyman Marc Levine, in his first piece of legislation, is calling for banning plastic grocery bags throughout California, starting in 2015. Levine says it's about advancing good environmental policy and best business practices. He adds plastic bags have a drastic impact on the environment, killing hundreds of thousands of marine fish and mammals each year.
Under Assembly Bill 158, grocery stores with more than $2 million in annual sales or retailers with more than 10,000-square-feet of floor space would have to stop offering plastic bags. These stores would be required to provide free recycled paper bags for their customers through July 30, 2016. After that, Levine said stores could charge a fee for recycled paper bags. As part of the bill, stores would also be required to sell reusable grocery bags.