Less litter, more beauty

Friday, April 1, 2005

There's no better time, it seems, to launch an attack on litter that the warm, sunny days of spring.

With winter's cold and gloom behind us, and with spring flowers, shrubs and trees showing off for us everywhere we look, the litter that was so much a part of winter's landscape now sticks out like a sore thumb.

That's probably one good reason so much attention has been turned to the litter and trash in our communities in recent days. Just about everywhere you look you can see signs of beautification and cleanup efforts.

* Dozens of motorists who regularly travel to and from Scott City have called attention to the orange-suited jail inmates picking up trash at the I-55 interchange under the watchful eye of police chief Don Cobb.

* Likewise in Cape Girardeau. City jail inmates can pick up litter to whittle away at their fines, and their efforts are eliminating some of the worst eyesores in the city.

* Adopt-a-highway groups have ended their winter hiatus and have been seen cleaning up stretches of highway. Appreciative motorists have taken note of this and have expressed their thanks in a variety of ways.

* The Jackson Board of Aldermen this week appointed several individuals to participate in the Anti-Litter Campaign Committee that has formed to exchange ideas and give some structure to the cleanup effort in our area.

* A special meeting has been called for later this month at Shawnee Community College seeking input from residents of five Southern Illinois counties regarding the trash and litter in the bottom tip of the Land of Lincoln.

* Another meeting of the Anti-Litter Campaign Committee is slated for 2 p.m. this afternoon at the Convention and Visitors Bureau building at the corner of Broadway and Main Street in downtown Cape Girardeau. Last week's meeting brought together more than 25 interested individuals. More are expected today. Anyone interested in helping tackle the litter problem is welcome.

* Last Saturday's downtown cleanup effort organized by Old Town Cape made a huge dent in the trash problem. More than 50 volunteers braved a cool, gray day and gave the area a much-needed Easter sprucing up.

With efforts like these, not only will litter be reduced, but attitudes will change. There is nothing better than pride in our communities to reduce the amount of litter that plagues the area.

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