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NY Requires Big Retail Stores To Recycle Plastic Bags

New York Governor David Paterson recently signed a legislation that will require many retail stores to recycle plastic carry-out bags or face fines from the state Department of Environmental Conservation, the Business Review reports.

The new law will take effect on Jan. 1, 2009 and applies to stores that have more than 10,000 square feet of space; are chains with more than five stores in the state, each larger than 5,000 square feet of space; or have at least 50,000 square feet of space in a mall.

Retail stores that “knowingly and intentionally” violate the law will receive a warning for their first violation. They could receive a fine of up to $100 for a second violation, and stores with violations beyond that will receive fines of up to $500.

The fines will be paid into the state’s environmental protection fund.

In November, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed a 6-cent surcharge for plastic shopping bags.

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