Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente announced Saturday that he would be opting out of charging residents a 5-cent fee imposed on paper bags by New York State.

The state legislature passed a plastic bag ban law in late March of this year and will go into effect in March 2020.

The law forbids stores from providing customers with single-use plastic bags, with a few exceptions.

The law gave counties the option of charging 5-cents for paper bags with 3-cents going to the State's Environmental Protection Fund and 2-cents going to help provide that county's low income residents with resuable bags.

During Picente's announcement on Saturday, hundreds of free reusable bags were provided by the Oneida County Public Market and other community partners.

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