Citizen organizing initiative to stop litter
Litter is unsightly, creates hazards for wildlife and detracts from community pride.
That’s the message Carter County resident Edward Jordan is touting and the reason he is organizing a grassroots committee to keep Tennessee clean and green.
Whether it is dumping garbage off steep rural routes or leaving fast food trash in parking lots and along city roads, Jordan said he is fed up with inappropriate disposal of waste.
He has met with various organizations and local and state leaders to present his cause, and said thus far, the response has been supportive.
Jordan invites the public to a meeting Saturday, Feb. 13 at 11 a.m. at Beef’O’Brady’s to contribute ideas and formulate plans of action. The committee at this meeting will discuss avenues for raising awareness, petitioning the state to post signage, reporting those who litter, and ultimately educating about the effects of litter. Other topics on the tentative agenda include the state’s adopt a road program and ways to work with the city and county’s existing programs.
After meeting with Carter County Sheriff Dexter Lunceford, Jordan said he learned that trash will be picked up if bagged and left on the roadside in the county.
The Carter County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) currently manages a vast network of roadway cleanups and in January alone collected 9,793 pounds of litter, from the roadside alone. According to the report filed with the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) through a litter grant program, CCSO employees and inmates covered 1,071 miles of county roadside and 47 miles of state roadside gathering litter. They cleaned up four illegal dump sites. No citations were issued according to the report.
“The Sheriff’s Office is doing everything they can to pick up trash and working hard at it too,” said Jordan.
Jordan wants to encourage people to report litter to TDOT at www.tn.gov/tdot/article/litter or by calling 615-741-2877.
Jordan said TDOT, Governor Bill Haslam, Senator Rusty Crowe and State Representative John Holsclaw have all responded to his call for support.
In a letter to the editor on Sunday, Jordan wrote about the beauty of this area and said that by educating about the impact of litter and by instilling a sense of local pride, this community can transform itself to being known for its cleanliness and beauty rather than for its trash and litter.
“It’s important not to damage wildlife, and it also shows that we take pride in our community,” said Jordan. “Litter is an eye sore, and cleanup helps with tourism and local pride.”
For more information about the meeting or efforts to clean up Carter County, contact Jordan via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.