Chicago’s New Bag Tax Takes Effect Wednesday

CHICAGO (CBS) — Come Wednesday, the shopping bag you get in Chicago will cost you as the city rolls out its $0.07 tax on paper and plastic bags.

CBS 2’s Audrina Bigos spoke to shoppers in Greektown.

“This is really inconvenient and it makes the politicians, as usual, look like the fools they are,” said Bill Hutchinson.

Under the new $0.07 tax, the city will collect $0.05 and the remaining $0.02 will go to the stores.

“Every time you turn around they are taxing something else,” said Terry Pernell.

So far, the list of stores where customers will have to foot the tax bill include: Walgreens, Jewel-Osco, Mariano’s, Target, CVS, PetSmart, T.J. Maxx and Whole Foods.

However, stores such as Target and Whole Foods will continue to offer incentives — $0.05-0.10 when you bring your own bag.

And there is some concern about customers shifting their shopping to outside the city.

“We’re always concerned about our members that our near the border,” said Illinois Retail Merchants Association VP Tanya Triche.

“Folks are doing that today, frankly, with the bottled water tax that the suburbs don’t have and with lower gas taxes in the suburbs,” Triche added.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Friday a partnership with Jewel-Osco, Mariano’s, Target and Whole Foods to provide Chicago residents free, reusable bags on Wednesday.

The city is conducting a ‘day of action’ to give away free, reusable “ChiBags” to residents across Chicago. The giveaway will take place at seven CTA stations during the evening commute.

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