Beware: 99 red balloons is a $24,750 fine

Beware: 99 red balloons is a $24,750 fine

If you’re vacationing in New Hampshire this summer, make sure to tie that balloon tightly around your child’s hand lest she become a wanted criminal.

New Hampshire’s House has passed a bill that will impose a fine of $250 for anyone who releases even a single lighter-than-air balloon. If your little environment-wrecker releases two, the fine goes by $500.

God forbid any last vestige of childhood innocence or fun be left intact or any corner of life whatsoever remain untouched by the clutching hand of government.

Those who favored the bill said the balloon materials, including the attached strings and ribbons, pose a serious threat to wildlife. Whales, turtles and seabirds that live along New Hampshire’s coastline mistakenly eat floating balloons thinking they are food, and then are unable to eat real food.

“Do we now get balloon police?” Rep. Randolph Holden, R-Goffstown, asked.

How many balloons can we possibly be talking about here? Is there some kind of epidemic of dead whales washing up on New Hampshire’s shore, choked to death by plastic balloons?

I’d like to formally apologize to New Hampshire on behalf of all Massachusetts conservatives for polluting your state’s political culture with all the liberals who have moved north over the past couple of decades.

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  • I’ll admit, I’m one of “those people” who when irritated by kids often feels glad I don’t have them (not uncommon at 23).  I’m also pro-environment, but even I think this is way too far. 

    Of all the problems in the world, the NH legislature decides to fine someone for letting go of a balloon?

    Whoever came up with this one must really hate kids,  anyone reasonable would just pass it off as what it is: no big deal.

  • So the Live Free or Die doesn’t apply to balloons???

    How hateful.  These bigots don’t think balloons have a right to be free?

    Now coming to a park near you, Heavier than Air Balloons.  What a drag!

  • Every law needs to be implemented with common sense. In fact, the article says, “The bill does not penalize accidental releases.” So, you don’t have to worry about your kids accidentally letting a balloon go.

    But, intentionally letting a balloon go is just as much littering as dropping a potato chip bag on the ground, and each should have the same consequences.

    I am for the law as described in the article.