Cigarette Butts Banned In Illinois: Minimum $1,500 Fine to Anyone Who Throws a Butt On the Ground

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posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 08:50 AM
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A law was recently passed in Illinois that I can get behind.

The new law states:


CHICAGO - Starting next year, Illinois law enforcement will not only be ticketing you for failure to wear a seatbelt or illegal use of a cell phone while driving, they'll also be stopping motorists who flick cigarette butts out their windows.

With former Democrat State Rep. Deb Mell's bill HB 3243 now law, flicking butts will cost you. A first time conviction is a class B misdemeanor with a fine not exceeding $1,500. A second conviction is a class A misdemeanor with a fine not exceeding $1,500.

Third or subsequent convictions will be a class 4 felony, punishable by a fine of $25,000 and imprisonment not less than one year and not more than three years.



According to the national lobbying organization Americans for Nonsmokers Rights, cigarette butts are "the most commonly discarded pieces of waste worldwide," with an estimated 1.69 billion pounds of butts ending up as toxic waste every year. The new amendment to Illinois's Litter Control Act, HB 3243, advocates that cigarette butts are a dangerous form of litter for the environment.


Some believe this is just another Govt. ploy to help increase fines. I'll say this, if they follow through with giving out fines to offenders this could be a cash cow...

As a non smoker I can get behind this law. It honestly bothers me seeing the amount of cigarette butts you find on the ground today. I throw out my trash always, why can't smokers do the same thing instead of throwing them on the ground? Cigarettes are nasty things that are filled with known toxins, littering them around has to have some affect on the land. I know smokers are bothered with the increased taxes on cigarettes and that they're not allowed to smoke in commercial buildings like bars, clubs, restaurants, etc. and now they need to worry about huge fines for one cigarette butt, but ultimately this is a good thing and hopefully more people quit putting those toxins in their body...

Would other ATS members welcome this new law to their state? If you're a smoker do you find this excessive?

Source

edit on 9-12-2013 by jhn7537 because: (no reason given)




posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 08:59 AM
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Illinois is the number on state for gun crimes and you all are worried about a cigarette butt. More folks are shot in Chicago in a week that the rest of the states combined. And you all are worried about a cigarette butt. Kids sleeping on the streets and homeless folks all around..and you all are worried about a cigarette butt. What about empty beer & liquor bottles? That gonna get you all's panties in a wad as well. What about litter in general? What about all the dog & cat crap laying around? Another example of TPTB singleing out one aspect of society and slamming them even more. Tax, fines, jail time? For a damn cigarette butt. Just another state to stay away from in the lower 48. As of now smoking is not against the law. And smoking is a personal choice, such as drinking. Pick on the liquor companies for awhile, their crap kills more per day than smoking ever dared too. As per the bumper sticker on my truck. " I SMOKE & I VOTE.
edit on 9-12-2013 by openyourmind1262 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:02 AM
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That is probably a higher penalty than a fracking company gets from a spill. It is probably higher than the fine that companies get from a small leak of environmentally damaging chemical on the ground.

This is kind of insane. People are not very intelligent, it is what you don't see happening that is more important. I can see charging someone if their butt starts a fire or fining then fifty bucks. I smoke, I do not throw butts on the ground most times, I butt them out and stick them in my pocket. That practice has not worked so well all the time though, sometimes the butts are not completely out.
I do not like littering though, the ash is one thing the butt is another.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:05 AM
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reply to post by jhn7537
 

I think the penalties are excessive; however, at least they are being consistent. The penalties are the same for any type of littering.

Follow the link and scroll down to Illinois, then compare it to penalties for other states:
States with Littering Penalties

Littering is one of the crimes that is rarely enforced unless directly witnessed by an officer. In most cases, it results in a warning unless the perpetrator is unreasonable or the offense is egregious.

This law may increase the amount that littering is enforced, but it will most likely only result in an increase of enforcement from cigarettes instead of other trash.

We already have enough laws. This one seems redundant.
edit on 12/9/2013 by InTheFlesh1980 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:05 AM
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openyourmind1262
Illinois is the number on state for gun crimes and you all are worried about a cigarette butt. More folks are shot in Chicago in a week that the rest of the states combined. And you all are worried about a cigarette butt. Kids sleeping on the streets and homeless folks all around..and you all are worried about a cigarette butt. What about empty beer & liquor bottles? That gonna get you all's panties in a wad as well. What about litter in general? What about all the dog & cat crap laying around? Another example of TPTB singleing out one aspect of society and slamming them even more. Tax, fines, jail time? For a damn cigarette butt. Just another state to stay away from in the lower 48.


Anywhere in my OP did I write that I wasn't worried about guns or that cigarette butts were the most important thing??? I kept my OP on the topic, which is cigarette butts, if I wanted it to be out all Illinois laws and what they should or shouldn't be doing then I would have likely included gun control into the mix...

And the people who are shot are gang on gang crimes for the most part and they also live on the South-West sides of Chicago, parts that no one goes to in their right minds...

But thanks for staying on topic!



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:07 AM
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rickymouse
That is probably a higher penalty than a fracking company gets from a spill. It is probably higher than the fine that companies get from a small leak of environmentally damaging chemical on the ground.

This is kind of insane. People are not very intelligent, it is what you don't see happening that is more important. I can see charging someone if their butt starts a fire or fining then fifty bucks. I smoke, I do not throw butts on the ground most times, I butt them out and stick them in my pocket. That practice has not worked so well all the time though, sometimes the butts are not completely out.
I do not like littering though, the ash is one thing the butt is another.


You are the good kind of smoke, the respectful kind

My brother-in-law does the same thing you do, puts them out and throws them in his trash can.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:09 AM
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Hey man, lit butts cause fires.

If only for the prevention of fire i think this is a good thing.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:10 AM
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reply to post by InTheFlesh1980
 


I too agree that the fines are a little excessive, but I think there's a simple solution for any smoker out there so they don't face a fine, just put out your butts and throw them out. I don't know about anyone else, but when I see hundreds of cigarettes littering side walks and city blocks it bothers me.. Especially when I walk my dog and they try to lick/eat everything on the ground. I have to be extra careful that he doesn't swallow cigarette butts...



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:11 AM
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Third or subsequent convictions will be a class 4 felony, punishable by a fine of $25,000 and imprisonment not less than one year and not more than three years.


What the hell?? Are they kidding?!?! Not LESS THAN one year in jail? Actually..prison for 1+ year sentences I believe...but I could be mistaken on that point.

Incarceration...and a major MULTI-YEAR disruption to life, family, friends, and perhaps even kids....because a cigarette butt was tossed? These lawmakers need mental health counseling and if that doesn't work, they need some time to live in a true totalitarian state like North Korea. See where this road ENDS, which they so happily drive us down.

I don't mind tagging them without mercy for littering. Littering it is....and while they're at it, tag the disgusting people who chew and spit onto the bare ground for all other to turn stomachs over. That ought to be MORE for the sickening nature of it.....and I'd add air pollution for politicians giving idiotic speeches, but the ones to be busted would have to pass it...so logic never will be seen around the Illinois Statehouse.

Wow..... Stupidity just doesn't know limits. This story shows it in neon lettering.
edit on 9-12-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:14 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Wrabbit- I'm sure no person would ever face jail, unless they were repeat offender and I mean like 10-15 times... I just don't see any court system throwing a person away for 3 offenses, even though the law is written that way...

What would be interesting, and just got me thinking, say a guy is out on Parole (obviously on probation) and gets a fine (Class B Misdemeanor) for flicking a cigarette butt, do you think that qualifies as breaking parole?



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:18 AM
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Wrabbit- I'm sure no person would ever face jail, unless they were repeat offender and I mean like 10-15 times... I just don't see any court system throwing a person away for 3 offenses, even though the law is written that way...


That's just it though, it is written that way, so they can.
And a felony will affect the rest of their lives. Jobs, guns, what have you.

This is ridiculous.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:22 AM
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I don't really see any problem with this law since it's even all over the board for the littering laws there.

I just carry a small pocket ashtray with me and clean it out at the next I run in to trash can it's not that big deal to carry one with me and I don't have to worry about setting my pocket on fire or anything else if I throw it out.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:22 AM
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jhn7537
but ultimately this is a good thing and hopefully more people quit putting those toxins in their body...


I have a problem with this. ^^^^ (Though I do understand what you mean)

As a recent non-smoker I do agree that it is a good thing when people choose to quit putting toxins into their body. BUT I also feel that it should be up to that person to decide when and how they quit doing it. It isn't up to the government (or anyone else) to keep restricting it until one no longer has a choice in the matter. That is in essence what is occurring where smoking is concerned.

Just because it is no longer "en vogue" it doesn't call for there to be an all out war on smokers. One has to understand why they are reluctant to accept further restrictions because they are being hit from all sides. They are now made to feel less than human for wanting to smoke something that is as legal as alcohol but does not leave nearly as many casualties in it's wake. (broken marriages, families, etc.)


Would other ATS members welcome this new law to their state? If you're a smoker do you find this excessive?


As far as I know it has always been a law in my state but was never enforced. My father received a ticket for littering a few decades ago for throwing a butt out of the car _ I don't think the fine was more than $20-$25 at that time. I welcome the law if it is enforced across the board. EVERYONE gets pulled for littering. EVERYONE gets ticketed for not using the trash can. If the focus is going to be on catching those nasty smokers above all other "litterbugs" then no.... I do not support it. Litter is litter after all and if they want to go vigilante on ALL of it, I would welcome it because the fast food bags and beer bottles that litter the side of the road are just as disgusting.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:26 AM
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jhn7537
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Wrabbit- I'm sure no person would ever face jail, unless they were repeat offender and I mean like 10-15 times... I just don't see any court system throwing a person away for 3 offenses, even though the law is written that way...

What would be interesting, and just got me thinking, say a guy is out on Parole (obviously on probation) and gets a fine (Class B Misdemeanor) for flicking a cigarette butt, do you think that qualifies as breaking parole?


You'd have to check your local laws. And even then it is usually at the discretion of the court as to punishment. If they are anything like the county I live in, they would at LEAST extend probation which is $100 per month, court costs est. $225, and that would be at the very least. The criminal justice system is a cash cow.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:37 AM
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Biigs
Hey man, lit butts cause fires.

If only for the prevention of fire i think this is a good thing.


I think that here is where we shall see enforcement. How many people do you see toss a flaming butt out the window? Beer cans and bottles don't start fires. People tossing ANY litter from a vehicle should be fined. But to put it in perspective, what if someone were to throw small, slow burning sticks out of their vehicle? The person would be charged with attempted arson or arson.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:39 AM
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reply to post by the owlbear
 


I completely agree that the court system is a cash cow. I remember back, like 10-15 years ago, when DUI's became the big push around my area, before you know it DUI arrests were at an all-time high year after year. Was it because alcohol just came to the city and people started drinking and driving? Of course not, people were doing it all along, the only difference is that the cops started enforcing it...

If Illinois wants to bring in extra revenue (which they desperately need) this will be a easy way to rack up fines because you know thousands, probably tens of thousands, of people throw cigarette butts on the ground every day...



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:49 AM
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jhn7537
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Wrabbit- I'm sure no person would ever face jail, unless they were repeat offender and I mean like 10-15 times... I just don't see any court system throwing a person away for 3 offenses, even though the law is written that way...

What would be interesting, and just got me thinking, say a guy is out on Parole (obviously on probation) and gets a fine (Class B Misdemeanor) for flicking a cigarette butt, do you think that qualifies as breaking parole?


I'm sure I don't trust Ilinois, as a specific state as it happens, to ever say 'I'm sure they'd never....'

The fact is they wrote the law to elevate to outright felony charges. It's overkill and totally absurd. Convicted felon? Really?? What do we get after a 10th offense? Life in prison?

This would have ...would have...been a decent idea, already well covered by Illinois state code for littering. Covered rather well there, in fact. Passing a new law to duplicate and enhance an old one because the litter happens to be one specific kind is as childish as a school kid changing rules in a game because it suits their specific need to look cool.

Really? So if I throw a bag of garbage out my window in Illinois ...and I throw a cigarette butt out a second later...I can be hit twice, with one WRITTEN out to carry a felony conviction? I don't care how many times it takes to be a felony...it would still be a FELONY (Convicted felon to live with on your record) for a cigarette butt on the pavement.

This blows clear past any concept of relative response and just gets petty and cruel because some pinheads in the statehouse have the power ..and in THAT state, they take glee in using it to batter their residents. Frequently.



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:50 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


If you're dumb enough to get caught for the same thing 3 times...
I don't feel sorry. Everyone messes up. But three times isn't simple absent mindedness, it is idiocy.

Eta: Didn't you used to drive I-70 a lot? On more than one occassion during dry years, I saw fires obviously caused by someone tossing something burning out of their cars...some of those fires were disconcerting enough, I called the MO state patrol...and I'm sure I wasn't travelling it as much as you.
edit on 9-12-2013 by the owlbear because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:53 AM
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reply to post by jhn7537
 


beezzer adding Illinois to the list of states he will never visit. . . . .



posted on Dec, 9 2013 @ 09:53 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


Do you think this could fall under the 8th amendment for "Cruel and Unusual Punishment"?

I'm a few credits shy of my law degree
so I don't know if this could fall under that, but I'm sure the first person charged with a felony for cigarette butts will likely appeal it all the way up to the Illinois Supreme Court...





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