Oklahoma Legislature approves ban on taxing plastic bags

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Legislature has approved a bill to prevent cities and towns from imposing a fee on single-use plastic and paper bags and it will now proceed to the governor’s office.

The measure aims to bar local governments from prohibiting or taxing “auxiliary containers,” made of material such as a cloth, paper, plastic, cardboard, aluminum and glass, used for carrying groceries, carryout and other bought items.

The Journal Record reports that the Oklahoma House passed Sen. James Leewright’s proposal Tuesday. The measure was already approved in the Senate.

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The bill proposal came after officials in Norman considered imposing a 5-cent tax on plastic bags in an effort to explore ways to limit a chief source of litter and pollution.

Oklahoma is one of at least five states where lawmakers are considering pre-empting local governments from taxing or banning plastic bags.

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