MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Minnesota city’s push to curb waste from shopping trips has to be scrapped.
Minneapolis had planned to implement a ban on most plastic bags at stores on Thursday.
But a state law went into effect Wednesday that outlaws cities from prohibiting any kind of bag.
“We spent quite a bit of time actually, informing our team, getting them talking to the guests so that this wasn’t a shocking kind of change for them,” said Murray Williams, Target’s Nicollet Mall store manager.
The Nicollet Mall Target had been putting the word out for months that June 1 meant no more plastic bags.
On Wednesday, the signs that reminded customers of the coming change were no longer there.
“We pulled all the signs and then we went team member to team member and let them know that, you know, this is not going to happen right now,” Williams said.
Thousands of paper bags that were set to replace plastic will now be shipped off to Super Target stores.
This adjustment comes after lawmakers decided to bag the idea that cities can create this type of ban.
But city leaders say this does not mean they are giving up on the ordinance. It only means that they are going back to the drawing board.
“We’ll look at our ordinance and see what parts of it are preempted and what parts aren’t, and kind of sort things out from there,” said Minneapolis City Councilmember Cam Gordon.
He co-authored the ordinance last year, and says the ban would help keep plastic out of the city’s garbage burner. And it’s similar to what has passed in Seattle, San Diego and other major cities.
He’s hoping that even though the city ban was stopped, someday a statewide ban will go into effect.
“We’ve seen cities go out on their own and do things in the past, including the indoor smoking clean air acts which the state eventually adopted,” Gordon said. “So this is something that would follow suit.”
Target is still encouraging people to not rely on their plastic bags, and to bring their own bags into the store.
They are giving customers who honor the bag request a 5-cent discount.