Litter

Litter like this can be found along roads throughout Leflore County.

Roadside litter’s not just unsightly. It’s dangerous, costly and a growing burden, Leflore County officials say.

Board of Supervisors President Robert Collins, who brought up the issue during a board meeting Monday, said Wednesday that the problem is hardly new.

“It’s been going on for a while, since my time in office,” said Collins, who has served District 5 for 12 years.

“We have a litter crew that goes around ... and they still can’t keep up with it. The road crew has to go and help sometimes.”

Jerry Smith, who manages the county’s road unit system, said litter causes problems with mowing along the roads. “When you have to stop and pick up debris and worry about safety issues, it can get real time-consuming.”

According to Smith, a job without picking up litter might take two hours. With litter, it takes around five.

District 1 Supervisor Sam Abraham has suggested prosecuting people caught littering.

Collins agrees.

“I want to start putting up cameras and start trying to get tag numbers,” Collins said Wednesday. “We want to start putting stiff fines on people and maybe start getting their attention that way.”

Overall, county officials see this as a communitywide problem, and one that can only be fixed as a collective whole.

“We really need people to be more mindful and try to help us,” Collins said. “We can’t do it as individuals. We need to do it as a community.”

“We got to work together as a team,” Smith said. “The residents, the workers and the sanitation department. ... With a team effort we can get this, and make it look a whole lot better.”

• Contact Adam Bakst at 581-7233 or abakst@gwcommonwealth.com. Twitter: @AdamBakst_GWCW

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