The city of Boston's plastic bag ordinance officially which goes into effect next month may create a hassle for shoppers.
The ordinance, which was passed unanimously last December by the Boston City Council, bans plastic bags and requires businesses to charge no less than 5 cents for other checkout bags, including reusable bags, compostable plastic bags and paper bags with handles. Paper bags without handles would still be free.
"For the people that don't have five cents and stuff or money to buy bags, that's where it's kind of unfair a little bit," said Elizabeth Rivera of Boston.
Larger stores like Roche Bros. in Downtown Crossing will have to stop carrying plastic bags Dec. 14, while smaller stores will be phased in next year.
"There's dollars attached to it obviously but I think it's going to be an easier thing for us going forward without the plastic bags, now we're just going to be dealing with one bag instead of two," said Roche Bros. Assistant Store Manager Ryan Gallagher.
Once the ordinance goes into effect, Boston will become the biggest municipality in New England to begin a ban on single-use plastic bags.
"There's a certain inconvenience factor to it but we'll see what the long-term is," said Doug Knox of Reading.
The Retailers Association of Massachusetts says it's sending the wrong message to consumers who are trying to shop locally that they will have to pay a penalty for the convenience of getting a bag with their purchases.
"We just want to make sure that our stores are on a level playing field with their online competition," said Retailers Association of Massachusetts President Jon Hurst. "Nobody's charging Amazon or these big online sellers for all the trash and packaging that's going to your front doorstep."