Jan 3, 2012 6:35 PM by Melissa Hawkes
Teenagers hoping to get a driver's license in 2012 will have to do more than just learn how to operate a vehicle. Student drivers will also have to take a littering course.
Every year it costs about 40 thousand dollars in tax payer dollars to clean up the trash people throw out of the windows.
Student driver, Jailand Dozier, said, "like right now, we have paper in the street."
She sees her friends tossing trash all the time.
"They'll roll the window down and spit their gum out in a piece of paper, " she said. " Throw it out the window like it's nothing."
Lawmakers think the problem starts as soon as 15 and 16 year olds get behind the wheel.
So now young drivers will be learning about littering as part of their driver's education course.
If you're driving and get caught tossing trash out your window, you may pay anywhere from 50 to 5 thousand dollars and even face jail time.
Driver's ed instructor, Willie Chube, thinks that'll get young drivers' attention.
He said," the fine gets their eyes open."
Environmentalists are hoping the warning will make a difference for driver's of all ages
Leah Harris with Keep Louisiana Beautiful said, "I'd like to say that ten years from now the state is as clean as it is beautiful!"
Dozier thinks it will work.
She said, "we know better now."