TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Florida lawmaker proposed new legislation to ban the release of balloons outside if they are not used on behalf of a government agency, government contract, or for scientific or weather purposes. To let them fly, balloon fans would need court approval.
The legislation, House Bill 91, removes a current stipulation that 10 or more balloons not be released by people, companies, or firms, within a 24-hour period if they’re inflated with gas that is lighter than air.
As written, the 24 hour, 10 or more stipulation is removed. However, Floridians can float the rule if they release the balloons indoors or if they’re flying in a hot air balloon that is recovered after launch.
Current law also allows for balloon releases if they are biodegradable, as determined by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. If passed, HB 91 removes that option.
However, balloons can be released by a Florida citizen if they “petition the circuit court to enjoin the release of balloons,” and are a resident of the county the balloons will be released in.
Should the bill pass, it would take effect on July 1.