Lubbock City Council votes to ban balloon releases within the city - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/8/09

Lubbock City Council votes to ban balloon releases within the city

By Brittany Pieper  - bio | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Local non-profits will need to start rethinking of ways to bring attention to their causes. During the Wednesday morning Lubbock City Council meeting, members of the council approved an ordinance to ban balloon releases in Lubbock.  

"They're a danger to wildlife. They're a danger to domestic animals," said Lubbock City Councilman Paul Beane of the events.  He also pointed out the balloons become litter. 

"I look at this as an environmental impact issue," said Councilman John Leonard. 

After 10-minutes of discussion, the Council voted 4 to 3 to approve an ordinance to ban organized balloon releases in the City of Lubbock. "Fact of the matter is, when you turn loose of that string in a balloon release it becomes somebody else's litter," said Beane, who proposed the ordinance.  He admits he has wronged the environment through balloons, "Believe me, I've been as guilty as anybody by taking part in these balloon releases in the past."

Beane says there are other ways to honor philanthropies and causes such as photographs, burning candles, or ribbons. "Maybe we could incorporate doves into our releases, there are other options out there," suggested Councilman Todd Klein. 

Some council members think the council should focus on more important issues like the city budget. "I thought it was ridiculous. I didn't say anything because I didn't want to laugh out loud, but are we going to start now a balloon patrol?" said Councilwoman Linda DeLeon. 

However, four council members thought it was important enough to support, and in doing so hope to clean up the City of Lubbock. "They don't go to balloon heaven," said Beane. 

During the first reading of the ordinance, the council made two amendments. They increased the number of bio-degradable balloons allowed in a release to 30 at one time instead of just 10-balloons, and also took out the exception for government agencies in the ordinance.

©2009 KCBD NewsChannel 11. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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