Salina Maintenance employee Mike Stevens approached the Salina City Council at their meeting held Wednesday, February 9 and asked for their direction regarding the city’s trash problem- particularly at the “top of Main”.
“We’ve got to do something to make a change,” he said of the littering problem that seems to be getting worse and worse. “We have people coming into our area to visit the CC museum and the cemetery, and is this what we want them to see? A big landfill? I’m not just talking about cups and hamburger Styrofoam, it’s bags of garbage. It is getting out of control.”
He acknowledges that it has been a problem for years, but it appears to be getting worse and something needs to change. One day he was so frustrated with the situation he called Kirk Rasmussen and asked him to help video a public service announcement for the city’s website and FaceBook page. Reponses to his social media post were few, but some suggested not allowing the students to gather at the top of Main, to have the school students take time to go clean it up, and to involve the parents.
Council members agreed that though this area is a major offender, there are other parts of town that also end up as dumping grounds and they extended a plea to local parents/adults to set an example for the youth in not littering and to take pride in the community.
Stevens plans to visit North Sevier High School administration and student body officers to enlist their help in curbing the trash issue, and Councilman Danny Viers encouraged signs to be posted with clear expectations.
“Let’s remind them that we’re better than this,” said Viers. “This is our town, and we’re the only ones that can take care of it. When we’ve clearly defined our expectations, but nothing changes, we won’t have a choice but to not allow parking up there.”
Councilman Cade Hunter suggested local officers stop by and take license plate numbers when groups are congregated in the area, then, if there’s a mess the following day, citations will be issued.
“If it was me getting my license plate number taken down by an officer, I’d be telling my buddies to take care of their trash,” said Hunter. “Once we give a few tickets, hopefully they’ll learn their lesson; otherwise, they won’t be allowed up there.”
Stevens will be visiting the school to discuss the issue there, and bright streetlights, and possibly even cameras, may be installed to help eliminate the issue.