After more than two hours of public testimony Tuesday night, the Anchorage Assembly postponed a decision on banning plastic bags until later this month.

A long line of people waited Tuesday to voice their opinion on what the Assembly should do.

Nearly everyone was in favor of banning the plastic bags for various reasons – because they fly out of the landfill, to keep them out of Alaska streams and away from salmon, or because there are safer options like biodegradable or compostable bags.

A lot of people were open to a tax, or some sort of small fee for people who want some other kind of bag. Others weren't, and were concerned about forcing people to use re-usable bags.

Some Alaska communities have already banned plastic bags including Wasilla, Palmer and Kodiak.

"It's time for Anchorage be on (the) positive bandwagon here,” Dorothy Childers of Indian told the Assembly. “I realize that a lot of the plastic pollution across in our oceans and across our landscape might not come from Anchorage, and it's truly a global phenomenon and a global problem, but we're a local community and we get to choose how we want to behave – and I think the more local communities that take action on this issue the better. And we lead by example."

The Assembly will next take up the proposed Anchorage plastic-bag ban at its Aug. 28 meeting.

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