State Rep. Pat Connick is on to something with his litter law aimed at those that discard cigarette butts out of their vehicle window. Connick’s bill would fine folks up to $1500 for the offense. And it makes sense. The number one liter item in New Orleans, this state, and our country is cigarette butts. They account for more litter than any other item. Connick’s law is a great start. But Louisiana needs to do what Chicago and California do, make all litter fines astronomical coupled with hours of community service picking up litter. The fines in those areas are so expensive that most folks know to never, ever litter. That’s why California and even big city Chicago are mostly clean.
New Orleans and the entire metro area is fairly filthy when compared to other metropolitan areas. By implementing litter laws with exorbitant fines and penalties, New Orleans would have a fighting chance of getting the city clean and keeping it that way. If not for us, the citizens of the area, than for the nearly 10 million tourists that visit our city annually. We are a filthy city and have been for decades. Hyper-expensive litter fines, like the ones in Chicago and California, would dramatically reduce that filth.