Brownsville's Plastic Bag Ban: One Year Later

You can choose paper, provide your own, or just use your hands.

One year later, a ban on plastic bags has made its impact on Brownsville.

"Its so much cleaner," said shopper Irma Rodriguez.

Edward Camarillo is a former city commissioner.

He spearheaded the project from the planning stages.

The ban went into effect January of 2011.

Camarillos said overall, he's satisfied with how it's played out.

"Greatest piece of legislation," said Alba Avila, who supports the ban.

Under the ban, the use of plastic bags is outlawed in most stores in Brownsville.

It means shoppers must provide their own bags and many of them do but they say it was a tough adjustment.

"I would always forget it, took me a few months to get used to it," said Ernesto Garza, who is not convinced by ban.

Shoppers like Garza abide by the ban but they question the motives.

"I think they use it to make money," said Garza.

Yet despite the criticisms, most shoppers we spoke to say they support it.

They say the ban has contributed in keeping the city looking cleaner.

So far, Brownsville is the only city in the Rio Grande Valley with a ban on plastic bags.

City leaders say they hope others will follow their lead.