According to a recent memo, they may not.

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Seacoastonline is reporting that Portsmouth's legal department has suggested that the city council refrain from continuing it's debate as to whether or not to ban single-use bags.

The website references a memo to the Council in which City Attorney Robert Sullivan as well as Assistant City Attorney Jane Ferrini address the matter.

A portion of the memo reads..........

In light of the recent vote by the House that HB 481 was inexpedient to legislate based on the committee report that concluded towns 'are not now empowered to adopt' legislation, it now appears that the legal department's original opinion that no enabling legislation currently exists to ban plastic bags is accurate.

The council is set to hold a meeting tonight to begin drafting such a ban.

More on the full story HERE.