New York. (AP) New York state will wait until April 1 to penalize stores that violate a new ban on single-use plastic bags that is embroiled in litigation, the state's top environmental official said Feb 29. New York officially prohibited stores from handing out most thin plastic bags starting March 1. But state Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said the state has agreed to delay enforcement as it fights a lawsuit in Albany County court, lodged by a manufacturer of plastic bags and by convenience store owners who call the ban unconstitutional. An association of 6,000 convenience store owners statewide opposes the state's efforts to allow stores to hand out only thick, reusable plastic bags that the industry says it can't yet produce.