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Survey finds slight area litter increase

Despite an overall slight increase in thelitter scale from 2010 to 2011, Lincoln County remains low on KeepLincoln County Beautiful’s scale of area little conditions,according to group spokesman Homer Richardson.

    Richardson presented the board of supervisors with his annualsurvey, which includes 90 spots spread over five beats plusBrookhaven. Lincoln County overall placed just below the “slightlylittered” mark.

    “We’ve trended back up for the first time in several years,”Richardson said. “We’re seeing a little more litter.”

    The survey was started by KLCB in 2000 and uses a numbered ratingscale from one to four, one being “no litter,” two “slightlylittered,” three “littered” and four “severely littered.”

    The highest the entire county rating was approximately 2.6, between”slightly littered” and “littered,” in 2002, according toRichardson’s findings. Last year was 1.24 and this year is1.29.

    Richardson said most of the litter is paper material with a fewrandom items such as Styrofoam cups and fast food bags.

    “I would say 95 percent of the litter is just something someonethrew out of the window,” he said. “I think it’s probably a smallnumber of people doing it, but it’s really making the county looktrashy.”

    Three areas in the county increased in the amount of littersurveyed from last year’s numbers. District One on the surveyincreased slightly from 1.10 to 1.25, and District Three increasedfrom 1.33 to 1.48 in 2011.

    The City of Brookhaven also saw an increase in litter, from a 1.08rating in 2010 to a 1.35 in 2011.

    District Two went down from 1.47 to 1.37, District Four stayed thesame at 1.10 and District Five decreased from 1.33 to 1.22.

    Richardson explained most people throw litter out of their cars,and they do so because they do not want to clutter their caranymore with a small piece of trash.

    He also said people are more motivated to throw garbage wheregarbage is already present. If the several small areas wheregarbage is seen can be eliminated, then the litter trend will be onthe decrease once again.

    Another item this time of year Richardson said is common to see isa deer carcass.

    “People seem to just throw them in a ditch on the way home (fromhunting),” he said. “A lot of the time the head has been lopped offor the antlers cut out, and the rest is left behind.”

    Richardson suggested letting people know that litter will not betolerated, rather it be law enforcement or city and countyofficials.

    “I think it starts at the home,” he continued. “Kids watch mommyand daddy do it and think it’s all right. But once it’s out on theroads, it becomes all of our trash.”

    Lastly, Richardson urged supervisors to encourage politicalcandidates to retrieve their political campaign signs, items thatattract litter and become litter themselves.

    “They really get to be an eyesore,” he said.

    In other county business, Lincoln County Civil Defense DirectorClifford Galey approached the board requesting an order to create aLoyd Star Community Volunteer Fire Department grading district.

    The proposed grading district would lower the rating in the LoydStar Community from 10 to 8, Galey said. Residents in the districtwould see their insurance premiums lowered.

    There was no opposition from the supervisors or the public at thepublic hearing, and Galey said the next step is creating the boardorder to send to the Mississippi State Rating Bureau.

    “They will approve or disapprove, based on a number of factorsabout the department such as the number of volunteers and equipmentmanagement,” Galey said.

    Board members will next meet Monday, Dec. 5, in the countyboardroom of the government complex. The hearings are open to thepublic.