Seattle voters deciding on 20-cent bag fee - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Seattle voters deciding on 20-cent bag fee

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SEATTLE, Wash. - Voters in eco-conscious Seattle are deciding whether to pay a 20-cent fee for every paper or plastic bag they get from supermarkets, drug stores and convenience stores.

City leaders had passed a bag fee ordinance that was to start January. But the plastics industry bankrolled a referendum to put the question to voters Tuesday's election.

Several polls show the measure failing.

Plastic bag makers have lobbied hard to defeat the fee, outspending opponents about 15 to 1. An arm of the American Chemistry Council gave $1.4 million, the bulk of money raised by the anti-bag fee group.

Supporters say the fee would encourage more reusable bags, cut down on pollution and waste and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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