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Toronto is latest city to ban plastic bags

Toronto has something in common with Los Angeles. Canada's largest city is the latest to enact a plastic bag ban. The motion to ban plastic shopping bags in Toronto came in a vote of 24-20 at Wednesday's city council meeting. The ban is anticipated to take full effect next January. The council also voted to end the nickel fee for plastic bags, which will be effective next month.

Toronto has something in common with Los Angeles. Canada's largest city is the latest to enact a plastic bag ban.

The motion to ban plastic shopping bags in Toronto came in a vote of 24-20 at Wednesday's city council meeting. The ban is anticipated to take full effect next January. The council also voted to end the nickel fee for plastic bags, which will be effective next month.

Calling it a surprise vote, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford told a local radio station the ban is "the dumbest thing council has done."

Councillor David Shiner introduced the motion to ban plastics bags. According to reports, the bag ban vote came "without legal advice, with no public consultation, no report from city staff and no statutory notice."

Ford predicted the ban will face legal challenges.    

"It is not a smart move by the council to ban plastic bags," Ford said after vote, according to The Globe and Mail. "I don't think it is going to hold up in court. You can't tell people they can't give out plastic bags. To me it's ludicrous."

Apparently after the decision was made, Shiner and Councillor Anthony Perruzza celebrated by "ripping a plastic bag," according to the Toronto Sun.

"I think it's a great victory today because we've gotten rid of the fee and we're getting rid of the bag and that's really what we want to do," Shiner said.

The ban prohibits Toronto retail stores from providing customers with single-use plastic carryout bags, including compostable, biodegradable, photodegradable or similar-type bags.

Toronto joins L.A., Seattle, and San Francisco who also voted to enact plastic bag bans.

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