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St. Lawrence County legislators support reusable shopping bags

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CANTON — St. Lawrence County legislators are promoting reusable shopping bags and asking corporate sponsors to offer bonuses to consumers who use them.

“What I’m really trying to get out of this is a discussion,” said Legislator Mark H. Akins, R-Lisbon, who pushed the resolution.

The idea was born out of selfish reasons, he said. “I’m tired of picking up plastic bags along our property,” he said.

Mr. Akins challenged the county Chamber of Commerce to develop a reusable bag that could be sold, along with giving businesses incentives to encourage their use. For example, his family farm could throw in extra ears of sweet corn if the buyer has a reusable bag.

The effort could save businesses and shoppers money, reduce garbage and encourage local purchases, Mr. Akins said. “I think it has a great deal of potential,” he said.

The Chamber is transitioning as Executive Director Patricia L. McKeown will retire May 22 and Brooke E. Rouse will take over June 2. She said she did not want to commit herself or the Chamber staff to anything before she starts work.

“It sounds like a good idea,” she said. “I’m certainly open to being in the conversation.”

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