oposed new law that would create stricter penalties for littering cigarettes, will be discussed during this current legislative session. Marrero Representative Patrick Connick says the idea came up after there would be a monthly roadside clean-up and thousands of cigarette butts had to be scooped up.
"It's unbelievable. These people are littering and throwing their cigarette butts out. They don't think it's litter but it is litter and something needs to be done about it and they need to keep their butts in their cars," Connick says.
Connick says under this proposed law, people who throw their butts on to the ground could face a 300 dollar fine and eight hours of community service. He says other states have even harsher penalties for people tossing their cigarettes.
"In Illinois, it is up to a $ 2,500 fine if you are caught two or three times but the initial fine is $1,500," Connick says,
According to Keep America Beautiful, cigarette butts are the biggest cause of litter in the country. Connick says he wants this bill to make people aware that butts are litter and they need to be more conscious of how they are disposed. He says this bill will hit committee soon.
"They end up in our lakes and streams, lawnmowers hit them. The filters just puff up and don't go away. Something needs to be done and people just need to be aware," Connick says.