Tuesday, 23 April, 2019

NY Nears Statewide Ban On Plastic Bags | Yorktown

Cuomo lawmakers reach deal to ban plastic bags DEVELOPING: New York to Become Second State in the US to Ban Single-Use Plastic Bags
Sandra Phillips | 31 March, 2019, 22:10

NY will also be one of the first states to impose a ban on single use plastic bags in grocery stores and other retail outlets, start next March.

Lawmakers are facing a Monday deadline on a budget agreement.

If passed, NY would be the second state after California to enforce a plastic bag ban. The ban would take effect in March 2020. Counties will be able to opt in to charge a five-cent fee for paper bags; revenue from the sales will be allocated to the Environmental Protection Fund and to a fund that buys reusable bags for consumers. Hawaii has an effective statewide ban that allows the state's four counties to set its own restrictions. "While the best policy would be a ban on plastic bags coupled with a statewide fee on other disposable bags, this agreement represents a tremendous step forward". The potential revenues are tempting, but leading lawmakers like Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes say that communities of color need to get a share of the benefits to mitigate the past harms of prohibition.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has said repeatedly that he will not accept a budget without at least a commitment to public campaign finance, said on WCNY's "The Capitol Pressroom" that he realizes there are obstacles.

With the ban, NY joins California in imposing a statewide ban (though the Times says Hawaii also has a de facto state-wide ban in practice, as they are prohibited by the island state's counties individually).

Saudi Arabia rejects US Golan move at Arab foreign minister Tunis meeting
Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Ibrahim Al-Assaf attends an Arab League foreign ministerial meeting in the Tunisian capital. As for the ongoing war in Yemen, the minister said: "we hold Iran fully responsible for what is happening in Yemen".

United Kingdom lawmakers vote 'No' on May's Brexit deal
Many had marched 450 kilometres from Sunderland to London and as they reached Westminster they shouted, "Leave means leave". However, Conservative Party chairperson Brandon Lewis said the government did not support any of those options.

U.S. Says N. Korea Not Denuclearizing After Failed Meet
Air Force brigadier general, said, "We've been fooled enough times, so the steady pressure will continue to have an effect". Mr Trump has stressed he enjoyed a good personal relationship with Chairman Kim during the summit in Vietnam.

Lawmakers plan to begin passing budget bills Sunday during what's expected to be an all-day session. Cuomo announced last month he wanted to close three prisons because of the state's declining inmate population.

The budget will also contain a provision requiring employers to give workers three hours off to vote on election day.

A congestion pricing plan for Manhattan is taking shape, and lawmakers are still considering whether to impose a pied-a-terre tax for non primary residential luxury apartments in New York City worth over $5 million, or instead substitute a real estate transfer tax on sale of homes worth more than $5 million.

One major issue that did not make it into the spending plan was the legalization of recreational marijuana.

Part of the criminal justice reform includes changes to the state's cash bail system.

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