- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 26, 2014

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Throwing a cigarette butt out your car window could get you a hefty fine, if lawmakers agree to a proposal that received the unanimous backing of the House natural resources committee Wednesday.

The bill (House Bill 910) by Rep. Pat Connick, R-Marrero, would add cigarettes and cigarette butts to the definition of litter in Louisiana law and make it subject to penalties for intentional littering.

A first offense would carry a $300 fine and 16 hours of community service in a litter cleanup program. A second offense would cost $700 and require 32 hours of community service. On a third offense, violators could give up their driver’s licenses for a year, pay a $1,500 fine and have to perform 160 hours of litter cleanup time.

The measure moves next to the full House for consideration.

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In other legislative action:

-The House criminal justice committee supported tougher penalties for heroin use and distribution in the state. The bill (House bill 332) would require a mandatory, two-year jail sentence for heroin possession and would double the minimum sentence for distribution from five years to 10 years. The measure, by Rep. Joe Lopinto, R-Metairie, moves to the House floor for debate.

-The cost of a hunting or fishing license would be reduced for retired members of the military, under a bill that won the support of the House natural resources committee Wednesday. Louisiana would charge a $5 fee for a retired military hunting and fishing license, if the proposal (House Bill 140) by Rep. Jack Montoucet, D-Crowley, is backed by the House and Senate. It heads next to the full House for consideration.

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Online:

Louisiana Legislature: www.legis.la.gov

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