- Associated Press - Sunday, June 15, 2014

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Maine environmentalists are urging Portland officials to support a 5-cent fee on disposable plastic or paper shopping bags.

Volunteers will be cleaning up the Back Cove on Sunday to show their support for the ordinance, which they say will reduce litter in Maine’s neighborhoods and waters.

The Natural Resources Council of Maine and the Surfrider Foundation Maine Chapter are organizing the event.

The Portland City Council is poised to vote on the ordinance that would establish the bag fee and prohibit single-use foam packaging.

Portland would become the first municipality in Maine to impose such a fee.

Opponents, including businesses, say the fee is a tax and the problem lies with the people who improperly dispose of bags.

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