With the help of a $15,000 grant from Keep Louisiana Beautiful (KLB), the Region 7 Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) Enforcement Division wrote 78 gross littering citations from July 31 to Dec. 31, 2006.
"Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and its enforcement agents are some of our best partners," said KLB Executive Director Leigh Harris. "These enforcement agents are serious about holding litter violators accountable for their actions. Keep Louisiana Beautiful is about changing attitudes, and only through enforcement, combined with education and awareness campaigns, can we hope for ultimate success."
KLB chose Region 7, which consists of East Feliciana, West Feliciana, East Baton Rouge, Ascension, Livingston, St. Helena, Tangipahoa, St. Tammany and Washington parishes, because they wrote the most littering citations in 2005.
The KLB grant money was spent to cover the cost of overtime hours accrued by LDWF agents. With the money, LDWF was able to add overtime patrols with a focus on gross litter violations in an effort to combat, prevent and deter gross littering.
"This grant money from Keep Louisiana Beautiful helped Region 7 write about 75 percent of the total statewide littering citations from July 31 to Dec 31 in 2006," said LDWF Enforcement Division Region 7 Captain Len Yokum. "Littering is something that we take very serious as we all want to ensure that our 'Sportsman's Paradise' remains clean."
Each first conviction gross littering citation carries a possible fine between $500 and $1,000 and eight hours of community service in a litter abatement work program.
"Region 7 has about 25 agents and everyone of them did a great job," Yokum said. "They all wanted as many hours as we could give out and would volunteer on their days off to help."
Keep Louisiana Beautiful is a volunteer-based service organization dedicated to litter reduction through education, enforcement and cleanups. The honorary chairman of the organization is Raymond Blanco, and partners in KLB's efforts include the Louisiana Governor's Office of Environmental Education, Department of Environmental Quality, Department of Transportation and Development, Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, Department of Corrections, Department of Economic Development, Department of Natural Resources, and State Police.
Additional information on the statewide anti litter campaign and upcoming KLB events can be found at www.KeepLouisianaBeautiful.org.
For more information, contact Cpt. Len Yokum at 225-765-2999 or email@example.com.