Liberty County Board of Commissioners Chairman John McIver, Flemington Mayor Sandra Martin, Hinesville Mayor Tom Ratcliffe and Riceboro Mayor Don Emmons recently signed up the county and its respective municipalities to participate in the statewide Clean Community Challenge.
Part of Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue’s overall campaign against litter, the CCC is an incentive program that recognizes local governments “that are holistically addressing litter prevention in their communities.”
According to Keep Liberty County Beautiful Director Sara Swida, participation in the initiative will bring much needed help in combating the county’s “tremendous litter problem.”
“...it will make it possible for us to access additional funding for things like signage, for things like surveillance equipment to get rid of illegal dumping sites, to get GPS equipment to help us as we quantify what kind of litter problem we have here,” she said
The initiative also includes provisions for creating “litter free events,” aimed at helping reduce the costs of event cleanups for area governments.
While Swida said the support for the CCC from political officials was helpful and appreciated, she noted clearing the county of litter would ultimately come down to everyday people working as a team.
“The important part of it is it’s not just the mayors and the county commissioners. It’s got to be all of us working together to make a tremendous difference here,” she said.
Facts about litter
• Littered neighborhoods can result in property values being lowered by as much as 15 percent.
• Conservative estimates indicate that over $30 million year is spent by state and local governments to cleanup litter.
• In one month during the Great American Cleanup, about 270,000 volunteer hours (same as 130 full-time workers) were spent picking up litter.