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State

Chicago approves partial ban on bags

CHICAGO – The Chicago City Council has approved a partial ban on plastic bags.

The vote Wednesday was 36-10. The ban exempts restaurants and small independent or non-franchise retailers. Stores larger than 10,000-square-feet would have to comply by August 2015. Smaller stores would have until August 2016.

Fines are between $300 and $500 for each offense.

Aldermen who voted against the ban cited worries about jobs and attracting stores to locate in Chicago. But those who support the ban say the bags litter city streets and parks and are bad for the environment.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel has said he supports the ban.

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