As expected, the Seattle City Council on Monday approved a 20 cent-per-bag fee on plastic grocery bags and a ban on polystyrene food and drink containers. Both laws will take effect on Jan. 1. City Council President Richard Conlin told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer that public support for the measures has been overwhelming.
[Conlin] said his office received about 4,000 letters, cards and e-mails in support of the legislation, and about 400 against it -- a record amount of correspondence on an issue for his office.While supporters said the fee is not a tax, and they emphasized that no one has to pay it -- they can use reusable bags instead -- the newspaper reported that the city expects the bag fee to generate about $3.5 million annually. Local merchants expect to replace PS foodservice products with similar items made from alternative materials.