To engage and unite Virginians to improve our natural and scenic environment.

New Bill Introduced: Littering will cost you!

Exciting Legislation coming up during this session of the General Assembly.  Delegate Joe Morrisey (D) is submitting a revision of our current litter laws! To read the full proposed bill, click here: HB114_01.03.12

Basically, he is taking away the prison time and up to $2500 fine and simplifying the litter laws to be very specific about how you dump your litter and trash, including from your vehicle, to be a flat $100 fine and community service ( to pick up the very litter disposed of improperly in the first place).  I think this is much more enforceable and cut and dry; you litter you pay$100!

This is definitely geared toward cigarette litter on the roadways.  Cigarette litter makes up 38% of all litter and costs our state millions of dollars to clean-up, not mention the countless fires started by cigarette butts.  Litterers beware, if you toss that butt…you are going to pay!

PICTURE ABOVE: Shows litter removed from a 1 mile stretch of 288…that’s unacceptable!

3 Comments

  1. Bobby Justus says:

    This bill in theory is fine for those that are caught littering from their vehicle. I encourage a fine, because most courts will not impose a jail sentence for throwing a cup out the window. My question is what about those people who have been dumping their household trash out on the back 40 or any other secluded area near the road for years? Yes, dumpers do throw their trash out beside the road aka right-of-way. Do we want to give them a $100 fine. Heck NO! I enforce environmental laws and this bill takes away the criminal aspect from this crime which is way entirely worse than throwing a piece of trash out the window. Instead of destroying a good general law that covers littering and illegal dumping, the legislators would be better served to create a new bill that covers each of these individual offenses. I think most would agree, at least those who work with litter on a regular basis would, that a single piece of litter is bad, a cigarette that could start a forest fire is more bad, and piles of trash beside the road is worse. I can back these statements up with pictures. This bill simply lumps them all together and says, here throw out all your trash and all you will have to pay is $100. This may help generate some revenue for localities, but I think all that it will do if passed will create an even worse problem with illegal dumping!

  2. Dawn Neher says:

    Bobby, you know I never thought of the illegal dumping aspect of what this bill would do, I completely agree that it completely negates the dumping penalty which should obviously be a stiffer penalty than $100. Maybe we could charge illegal dumpers, $100/piece of trash that should end up being a substantial amount, not sure how to add that to the bill. Have you tried to contact Delegate Morrisey to see if he thought about the illegal dumping problem, maybe an amendment could be made?

  3. Doug Clark says:

    I agree with Bobby. Whacking someone $100 for tossing a butt might encourage people to use their ashtrays (and not empty the ashtray in someone else’s parking lot), but people unloading appliances, etc. along back roads and elsewhere are big-time slobs.
    As an example of an “attention-getter” law, Maine will fine litterers according to the weight or volume of the litter. If a motor vehicle is involved (and it usually is), they can have their license suspended.

Leave a Reply