Toronto, Ontario - heftier fines may be coming when you discard cigarette butts..

September 13, 2010 - In Toronto, the city’s 2006 Street Audit found that discarded butts make up nearly 15 percent of all small litter items — the audit precedes the 2006 Smoke-Free Ontario Act, however, which banned smoking from public indoor spaces and pushed more smokers, and their cigarette butts, outside. (The Smoke-Free Ontario Act is designed to protect the health of all Ontarians by prohibiting smoking in all enclosed workplaces and enclosed public places in Ontario as of May 31, 2006.)

Dave Levac, now an Ontario Liberal MPP (member of provincial parliament) from the City of Brant, Ontario – wants to implement a private member’s Bill to increase fines on smokers in the Province of Ontario to $3000.00. Levac introduced Bill 28, Cigarette and Cigar Butt Litter Prevention Act, 2010 on April 1, 2010. The wording of Bill 28 - at bottom. Levac: “We want to make sure that people understand that a cigarette, a cigar, or whatever, that’s littering,” he said. “(The increased fine) sends the signal that we mean business.”

A City of Toronto bylaw already exists to punish those who would litter (and that includes cigarette and cigar butts) with a fine of $365.00 attached upon conviction.

Bill 28, has only gone through its first reading and will not reappear on the docket until at least next year, Levac said. (Ontarion How a Government Bill Becomes Law)

But if it is passed, litter fines will increase under the Environment Protection Act, doubling today’s minimum $1,000 fine to $2,000; the maximum fine goes to $3,000 from the current $2,000. Levac also wants to amend the Highway Traffic Act to include cigarettes, cigar butts and cigars under the definition of highway litter.

Levac acknowledges existing laws are rarely enforced and he hopes that by increasing provincial fines, the bill will prompt more discussion of the problem and enforcement will intensify. Levac said more ashtrays and receptacles would also help mitigate the cigarette litter problem but at the end of the day, people can only blame themselves when it comes to their garbage.

If you thought Cigarette Butts Everywhere Were Bad Wait Until Discarded SNUS Bags.

References: Cigarette butt litterers could see heftier fines, Jennifer Yang Staff Reporter,, 9/9/2010; Butt Out Somewhere Else! – Ontario Liberal Dave Levac
Posted by Admin in New/Updated Laws
, Posted by Admin in New/Updated, Laws,, 9/10/2010.