If you've been wondering when that plastic bag tax was going to take effect in Washington, don't wonder any longer as the new plastic bag ban takes effect soon. 

When Does Washington's Plastic Bag Ban Take Effect?

The plastic bag ban will take effect on October 1st after several delays and extensions.

I was at Yoke's a few days ago and asked when the bag ban would take effect, the poor cashier gave me the look of despair as he didn't know.

Luckily, I've got you covered with the details on the ban and who's exempt from the plastic bag ban.

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In an effort to cut back on the plastic bags used at the grocery stores, an 8 cent added tax will be added to your bill for a single-use bag at the checkout stand.

Are There Exemptions For The Washington Plastic Bag Ban Tax?

You might wonder if there are any exceptions for the tax and yes you'd be correct.

You might fit into the category of not having to pay the tax - here are the exceptions for paying the plastic bag ban tax:

  • The fee may not be collected from anyone using a voucher or electronic benefits card issued under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Women, Infants and Children (WIC), Temporary Assitance for Needy Families (TANF), or Food Assistance Program (FAP).

If you fall into that category, you won't have to worry about the 8 cent addition to your receipt at the grocery store.

What Are The Details Of The Washington Plastic Bag Ban Tax?

Here are more details on the plastic bag ban and what it entails:

When the law becomes effective on October 1, it will:

  • Prohibit single-use plastic carryout bags in all retail and grocery stores, restaurants, takeout establishments, festivals, and markets.
  • Require an 8-cent charge for all recycled content paper carryout bags and reusable carryout bags made of film plastic.
  • Require a minimum of 40% post-consumer recycled content and meet composting requirements in all retail-provided paper bags.
  • Require that a reusable bag made of plastic film contain 20% post-consumer recycled content and be at least 2.25 mil thick.
  • Require compliant paper and reusable plastic film bags to be labeled with the above specifications
  • Create consistent policy and fees across the state.
  • This ban does not apply to food banks and food assistance programs, however, those programs are encouraged to take actions to reduce the use of single-use plastic carryout bags.

If you head to the store after October 1st, take along your own bags to avoid the charge unless you fall into an exempted category.

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