By Joel Hall
This week, the Clayton County Board of Commissioners passed a resolution officially establishing a Clayton County Adopt-A-Road Program.
While Adopt-A-Road has been a pet project of Keep Clayton County Beautiful, Inc., for several years, the establishment of the program ensures the financial support and participation of the county.
Edie Yongue, director of Keep Clayton County Beautiful, Inc., said the county's adoption of the program is a recognition of the validity of its efforts to protect county roads.
"They approve of what we are doing and they are giving their blessing," said Yongue. "Going under the county, it actually gives us more resources."
The Adopt-A-Road program will organize businesses, schools, churches, and other groups to take greater ownership of their local roads by helping to keep them clean. Groups will be required to have at least one year of involvement, cleaning both sides of a one-mile stretch of road a minimum of four times a year.
Through the new program, Keep Clayton County Beautiful, Inc., will supply volunteers with trash bags, litter grabbers, and gloves, and coordinate the removal of filled trash bags from designated locations.
"The Adopt-A-Road program is really being revitalized," said commissioner Sonna Singleton. She said with the current economic squeeze, the Adopt-A-Road program is one way citizens can help the county maintain the aesthetic quality of local roads.
"We get calls from a lot of people about wanting to have roads cleaned," said Singleton. "We just don't have the manpower to send somebody out as often as we would like. With the economy this year, it's going to be a lean budget and this is one way that citizens can help."
Singleton added that the county's adoption of the program will ensure volunteer groups get the proper training before going out to clean roads.
"It seems like common sense," however, "the county wants to really make sure that students are safe when they clean the roads."
BOC Chairman Eldrin Bell said the program would not only help to eliminate litter and keep roads manicured, but would also help eliminate graffiti along the county's non-state highways.
"We're joining in with [Keep Clayton County Beautiful, Inc.] and seeking the assistance of private industry ... and encouraging businesses and other people to help in keeping our county clean," said Bell. "It's the beatification of the county that we are concerned with, and this works to enhance that. I encourage citizens in the county to participate in it."
To contact Keep Clayton County Beautiful, Inc., about starting a road adoption project, call (770) 473-5996.