Bag it

Published 8:54 pm Friday, March 26, 2010

The amount of litter that is found along our county’s roadways is a shame.

Decatur County Commissioner Butch Mosely again expressed disgust at the amount of trash that accumulates along the sides of roads and streets the county and its municipalities.

According to statistics compiled by Keep Decatur County Beautiful, county inmates picked up 12.85 tons of trash, including tires, from alongside county roads during February.

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Between March 1 and March 22, 2.71 tons of trash were picked up.

Within Bainbridge city limits, probationers doing community service picked up 4.51 tons of trash during February, and had picked up 2.62 tons to date in March.

“[The work crews] can hardly pick up all the litter before it is thrown out again,” Mosely said.

Enforcement would be key, and citing the $1,000 fine as opposed to the old $500 fine may get some attention to other litterers out there.

There are several problems as to why the county is so trashy.

One, there’s no mandatory garbage pick up in the county, so those who are too cheap or lazy to bag their trash and take to the dump or another legal disposal site simply just dump it—on someone else’s property.

Maybe the penalty for those caught illegally dumping should be to have their pictures plastered everywhere, just like other criminals.

Mosely said he wants the Sheriff’s Office and other law enforcement to more aggressively issue citations to anyone caught littering. Keep Decatur County Beautiful has applied for a grant to fund purchase of surveillance cameras that could be placed where littering is especially bad, in an effort to catch those who do it in the act.

That would be great. People say they like to have pictures with their stories, so there you go. We’d include a big headline.

Another part of the litter problem are people who let their pickup truck beds be their garbage dumps, so that the wind blows all the loose trash out into the road.

Busting up that practice with a hefty fine or two may force some to realize truck beds were built for other purposes.

There is really no excuse for the amount of litter thrown about the county. It’s too pretty of a place to trash up.