Litter along county roads is piling up

Magistrate sees it as ‘an urgent situation’

The litter problem along Boyle County roads and highways “is an urgent situation,” said Magistrate Tom Ellis during Boyle County Fiscal Court meeting on Tuesday.

“It’s a mess out there,” said Solid Waste Director Angie Muncy, and people are calling her office everyday to complain about the litter that’s piling up.

Muncy said for nearly a year, inmates at the Boyle County Detention Center haven’t been available to help pick up roadside trash because of COVID-19 restrictions at the jail. “COVID has put the whammy on everything.”

Therefore she asked the court to approve her hiring a part time employee at $10.5 an hour using state appropriated litter abatement money.

“In my opinion, this is considered an emergency hire because of the situation that we’re facing.”

After the meeting Muncy said, “Every county in the Commonwealth of Kentucky has the opportunity to receive Litter Abatement money. This money is calculated based on the county’s population and road miles.”

Boyle receives about $30,000 annually for litter clean up, she said. To receive the litter abatement money, the solid waste department is required to conduct three litter cleanups along a number of public roads each year. Muncy said “The public road cleanup is defined as the cleanup of litter along a number of public road miles equivalent to one third of the total public road miles in the solid waste management area.”

She added, “Of course we clean up much more. In 2019 county and city governments removed 584,496 bags of litter on 148,426 miles of roadways. Most of the items found on roadways are plastic bottles and food containers.”

Currently, one of the most complained about areas concerning litter is the bypass intersection with Perryville Road near Bob Allen Used Car Super Store.

Muncy said she understands why people complain about litter, “But community service goes a long way. If you just go out and pick up trash in your front yard, it would go a long way to help out.” She added, “Everybody can do their part just a little. It won’t hurt you.”

Magistrate Jamey Gay agreed that the litter problem is everywhere. He said when he walks his family’s new puppy, he picks up at least one bag full of trash each time. “It’s amazing how much stuff is out there.”

He said too that the litter problem wouldn’t be a problem “if the public would do its part in containing their waste and trash.”

Muncy said, “There’s plenty of trash cans out there.”

In other news, Muncy asked the court to reject the two bids she received to lease land to the county for a dead animal composting site. “I think it’s in the best interest of the county that we do this.” She added, “We are working with the city hoping to find something that works with them, or something that we can purchase ourselves in the future.”

The court agreed and voted to reject both bids.

In other county business”

• Magistrate John Caywood asked the other court members if they have had a chance to visit the area near the new dog kennel on Maple Avenue. He said there are a lot of neighbors who are frustrated with the amount of noise from constant dog barking and bright security lights at night.

County Administrator Julie Wagner said she was researching kennel regulations and noise ordinances that could possibly help the situation.

Caywood said, “Let’s just keep moving forward on it.”

Caywood then asked if there was a plan to keep the courthouse and its employees safe in case an angry group of people stormed into the building. Hunt said the sheriff’s office had a plan.