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Brookings proposal ignites debate on plastic bags

SIOUX FALLS (AP) — Brookings councilman Tom Bezdichek says he plans to bring a measure to ban the use of plastic bags in the city, kicking off a debate throughout the state.

Opponents view plastic bags as a waste of resources and a source of pollution, while supporters say plastic is a cheap modern convenience that replaced tree-killing paper bags.

Bezdichek says plastic bags are a "disaster" and they blemish the landscape.

Shawn Lyons, executive director of the South Dakota Retailers Association, says there have been plastic bag bans in other parts of the country, but his group is taking a wait-and-see approach on the Brookings proposal.

Lyons tells the Sioux Falls Argus Leader that many retailers in the state have recycling programs that encourage customers to reuse or return plastic bags.

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