It’s Official – Balloon Releases Are Now Illegal In Maine
A few weeks ago, we told you there was a good chance that Maine would ban the intentional release of balloons in Maine.
Apparently, it is now official.
According to the Bangor Daily News, LD 618 is now a law. After it passed the Maine legislature, Governor Janet Mills allowed it to become law without actually signing it.
Under the new law, people who intentionally release balloons will face fines that could be in the thousands of dollars.
The amount of the fine will depend on how many balloons are released. For example, first-time offenders who release 10 or fewer balloons at one time will be fined anywhere from $100 to $500. Subsequent offenses increase to over $1,000. While, people who are caught releasing more than ten balloons will face a fine of $500 to $1,000. Repeat offenders could get a fine of up to $2,000.
It is important to remember that people who accidentally release a balloon (or several balloons) will not face a fine. So, if your kid lets go of their balloon, you won't owe the state any money.
Additionally, scientific balloon releases (like weather balloons) will still be allowed.
The reason for the ban? Scientists have been concerned for some time about the danger downed balloons pose to wildlife and ocean life. In the past, critters have eaten pieces of the balloons and become sick or died.
So, if your celebrations (or remembrances) commonly used the release of balloons, you are going to want to find an alternative way to celebrate.
2021 Maine 4th of July Fireworks Displays
If you have not done it yet, sign up for our email newsletter.