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Dem lawmakers want statewide ban on plastic bags

Two Democratic legislators want to make it a crime for Wisconsin stores to put things in plastic shopping bags.

Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Madison, and Sen. Bob Jauch, D-Poplar, introduced a bill Wednesday to only allow bags which are biodegradable.

The ban would take effect three years after it's signed by the governor.

San Francisco has passed such a ban and so did the Whole Foods chain.

It wasn't talked about in Wisconsin until a committee in Madison said it might consider banning plastic bags in that city, but not until next year. Pocan then talked about taking the ban statewide now.

The Wisconsin Grocers Association says it would be expensive technology and it would cost all of us more at the checkout.

The group's Brandon Scholz says stores are encouraging folks to recycle those plastic bags and there is indeed a market for them.

Pocan says millions of plastic bags still end up in landfills, where it takes up to 1,000 years to break down.

In addition, because they're made with petroleum, Pocan says it only worsens our reliance on foreign oil.