Rexburg women honored for highway cleanup efforts
A women’s group in Rexburg learned in a short time the best way to keep a section of highway clean is to clean it often and thoroughly – a lesson that is paying dividends on a segment of U.S. 20 in eastern Idaho.
Members of the General Federated Women’s Club (GFWC), which is part of the Rexburg Civic Club, adopted a two-mile segment of highway in November 2006. And in just over a year, the group has cleaned its adopted section four times, harvesting 3,220 pounds of trash.
The group is responsible for cleaning from milepost 330 to 332 between Rexburg and Idaho Falls.
Its efforts led to selection as the District 6 Adopt-A-Highway group of the year. In honor of the accomplishment, Idaho Transportation Board member Lee Gagner and his colleagues presented a framed certificate and a clock fashioned from a sample Idaho license plate to GFWC leaders Aug. 20 during the regular board meeting in Rigby.
ITD’s statewide Adopt-A-Highway program organizes the cleaning of Idaho roadsides by volunteer groups. Those groups “adopt” a specific stretch of highway – usually two miles long – and take responsibility for keeping it clean through regular litter patrols.
More than 1,000 groups spent approximately 47,000-person hours statewide removing litter in 2007, collecting an estimated 1.4 million pounds of litter from Idaho’s roadsides. About half of Idaho’s highways have been adopted, leaving ample opportunities for other groups and individuals to become involved.
The volume of material collected from the shoulders of Idaho makes a tremendous difference in the appearance of Idaho’s highways, said statewide AAH coordinator, Sherie Sweaney.
Volunteer efforts save the state more than a quarter-million dollars that can be applied to other projects, improving safety and driving conditions.
For more information about adopting a stretch of highway, contact Sweaney at (800) 443-2878.