Jackson, Cape mayors join litter patrol

Saturday, June 25, 2005

The mayors of Cape Girardeau and Jackson and some members of their councils will pick up litter today along U.S. 61 at Center Junction as part of an ongoing campaign to clean up the cities by the Fourth of July.

Members of the Cape Girardeau City Council and the Jackson Board of Aldermen are scheduled to start picking up litter at 10:30 a.m.

The Cape Girardeau Public Works Department will provide the trash bags and pick up the litter-filled bags when officials finish their task. Officials plan to spend about an hour cleaning up Center Junction.

"I think this is a great opportunity for us to help make that final push to make sure our community is clean by Independence Day," Jackson Mayor Paul Sander said.

A local anti-litter committee is spearheading a campaign to remove litter in Cape Girardeau, Jackson, and surrounding Cape Girardeau County and Scott City.

Cape Girardeau Mayor Jay Knudtson said he's been impressed by the public support for cleanup efforts so far.

"I would like to encourage all citizens to take advantage of this time to clean up their own properties," Knudtson said.

"Take a walk down your street and just pick up litter for an hour. I think if everyone just takes a small amount of time, the result will amaze us," he said.

Knudtson said ultimately the campaign intends to create a culture in which residents routinely pick up their trash.

"The power of peer pressure and positive actions is the best way to create a new mindset," he said.

Officials said the public also is invited to participate in the Center Junction cleanup.

Sander said he and Knudtson wanted to show the public that local officials are directly involved in the litter battle.

"I think anybody that says we are going to win this battle is probably being overly optimistic," Sander said. "The litter battle is always going to be there."

But he said cleanup efforts can help. "With just a little effort by everyone, we can stay ahead of the problem," Sander said.

mbliss@semissourian.com

335-6611, extension 123

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