Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s 2019 budget proposal will call for a ban on plastic bags in New York as well as an expansion of the state’s bottle deposit law.
“While the federal government is taking our environmental progress backwards and selling out our communities to polluters and oil companies, in New York we are moving forward with the nation’s strongest environmental policies and doing everything in our power to protect our natural resources for future generations,” Cuomo said.
“These bold actions to ban plastic bags and promote recycling will reduce litter in our communities, protect our water and create a cleaner and greener New York for all.”
Two years ago, state lawmakers and Cuomo agreed to overturn a 5-cent surcharge in New York City on plastic bag usage. Instead, Cuomo convened a task force to review plastic bag usage statewide.
The ban will have the Department of Environmental Conservation roll out the push so it does not impact low-income communities and include distribution of reusable bags. Exemptions will also be made “were appropriate” Cuomo’s office said in the announcement.
The expanded bottle deposit will include most non-alcoholic beverage eligible for the 5-cent redemption. That will include sports, energy, fruit and vegetable drinks as well as ready-to-drink teas and coffees.
Some exemptions such as bottles containing dairy and milk substitutes, including infant formula, syrups and dietary supplements will be made. Plastic Bag Ban.