East Brunswick council seeks to ban balloon releases

EAST BRUNSWICK–The Township Council introduced an ordinance amending the township code to prohibit the releasing of balloons and/or sky lanterns outdoors.

The purpose is to protect the environment, particularly wildlife, and the health, safety and well-being of people and property by prohibiting the release of aerial luminary lanterns and helium balloons into the atmosphere, according to the council agenda.

The council introduced the ordinance on Sept. 23, with the final reading scheduled for Oct. 14.

If the ordinances passes, it would be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to intentionally release, organize the release, or intentionally cause to be released any untethered sky lantern, aerial luminary lantern or similar device or balloons inflated with a gas that is lighter than air within the township limits, except for:

  • Balloons released by a person on behalf of a governmental agency or pursuant to a governmental contract for scientific or meteorological purposes;
  • Hot air balloons that are recovered after launching; or
  • Balloons released indoors.

Any person found in violation is guilty of a noncriminal infraction punishable by a fine not exceed $500, according to the council agenda.

The ordinance would take effect 20 days after its final adoption, according to the council agenda.

For more information, visit www.eastbrunswick.org/content/885/101/default.aspx.

Contact Vashti Harris at vharris@newspapermediagroup.com.