Most people know that littering is illegal. But do you know that a littered community directly affects economic development, including property values. In fact, litter cost Louisiana taxpayers $15 million annually. It contributes to flooding when it collects in ditches by preventing water from draining properly. Litter that makes it through the ditches ultimately ends up in waterways where it pollutes the water and creates a toxic environment for wildlife.
The four most common culprits are cigarette butts, fast food packaging and beverage containers. Litter is slow to biodegrade. Paper takes two to five months, a plastic bag takes 10 to 20 years and a single cigarette butt can take up to 15 years to biodegrade.
Keep Mandeville Beautiful has created several programs and launched many efforts to address Mandeville’s litter problems. KMB secured grant money to purchase 23 steel trash cans that can be found along the lakefront, trailhead and other public spaces. Over the past three years, KMB has distributed 8,000 pocket ashtrays through partnerships with local convenient stores. When people would purchase cigarettes they would be given a free pocket ashtray to be used when no ashtray is available. KMB also purchased several large cigarette receptacles that are installed at the trailhead and other public spaces.
Community involvement is also a key component to the organizations efforts to reduce litter. KMB sponsors two citywide cleanups each year. Over 500 volunteers join the in the effort every September. The other cleanup is held in the spring around Earth Day. Volunteers of all ages are encouraged to participate. It is a great way for students to earn community service hours. In fact, ¾ of the volunteers are young people from Boy and Girl Scout troops and school organizations. Volunteering at one of the cleanups is also a great family experience. Many families make it an educational day, teaching their children the importance of caring for and being a part of their community.
Abide by all the litter laws. To find a complete listing of Mandeville’s litter laws go to the Code of Ordinance and Resolutions Article II Section 9-20 thru 9-29 and CLURO Article 9 at www.cityofmandeville.com.
- Follow the Mandeville litter laws that pertain to businesses –
To find a complete listing of Mandeville’s litter laws go to the Code of Ordinances and Resolutions Article II Section 9-20 thru 9-29 and CLURO Article 9 at www.cityofmandeville.com.
- Make sure your business dumpster is enclosed with a fence or screened with evergreen vegetation. (CLURO Article 9 18.104.22.168) Keep the lid and side doors on your dumpster closed at all times. Pick up any trash surrounding the dumpster. (Article II sec 9-26)
- Keep the premises of your business clean. This includes all sidewalks, driveways, parking lots, green spaces and alleys. At the beginning or end of the day, have an employee empty trash and ash receptacles, and pick up trash surrounding your business including the parking lot. (Article II sec. 9-27, sec. 9-28)
- All businesses must have a trash and ash receptacles at the business entrance. (Article II sec. 9-29)
- Volunteer – Schedule community work days for your employees with Keep Mandeville Beautiful (KMB). Employees who are invested in their community will be invested in their workplace as well. KMB can schedule various gardening, litter or recycling projects. Businesses can also Adopt-A-Spot in Mandeville which adds additional exposure for the business.
- Landscaping – Plant trees and gardens around your business adds a welcoming feature while beautifying your workplace.
For more information contact KMB at firstname.lastname@example.org or (985)624-3165. The Litter Abatement Committee is lead by Hope Kitchens.