A new law now makes single-use items like ketchup packs and plastic utensils illegal in New York. So just how does this affect the Hudson Valley?

The "Skip The Stuff Bill" was officially signed into law on February 3 and went into effect on Monday, July 31. According to the law, restaurants can no longer automatically include utensils, condiment packets, napkins, or extra food containers with take-out or delivery orders. While the law only affects New York City restaurants for now, it's only a matter of time until Hudson Valley municipalities begin to consider similar measures.

Communities in Ulster, Dutchess and Orange County were some of the first in the state to consider bans on single-use plastic bags. Way before they were outlawed in New York State Hudson Valley residents were already bringing their own shopping bags to the grocery store. Now that New York City has passed the "Skip The Stuff" law you can expect to see similar legislation right here.

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The law states that restaurants can only give out napkins and other single-use items if the customer specifically requests them. Here in the Hudson Valley, there are many local restaurants that already follow this rule, however, the execution is spotty at best.

I've ordered online from several local restaurants that offer an option to decline plastic utensils and napkins. Almost every time I still receive unwanted single-use items even though I've opted out. Once it becomes a local law, the default will be for no items to be included with your order and you'll need to opt in instead of out to receive them.

What do you think about this new law? Do you use the plastic forks, ketchup packs and napkins that come with your food or do you just tend to throw them away? Let us know your thoughts by dropping us a text on our mobile app.

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