CHICAGO
08/30/2013 03:22 pm ET Updated Aug 30, 2013

Illinois Littering Law Update Could Mean Big Fines For Cigarette 'Butt' Flickers

Planning on tossing that cigarette butt on the ground? Hefty fees outlined in a new amendment to Illinois' state littering law could just nip that butt-throwing habit in the bud.

Thanks to an amendment signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn earlier this month, anyone caught throwing a cigarette butt out a car window or onto the ground or any other public place could face up to a $1,500 fine beginning on Jan. 1, 2014, the Rockford Register Star reports.

The new amendment, sponsored by ex-state Rep. Deb Mell, was initially introduced in February, approved by a 71-45 vote in the House in April and passed in a unanimous 55-0 vote in the Senate in May, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

In addition to the fines, violators convicted of the Class B misdemeanor could even face jail time -- a maximum of six months.

The expansion of the state littering law to include cigarette butts coincides with an effort to expand littering fines in the city of Chicago.

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