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Effort to Clean Up Covington Mobilizes Further

There are not enough trash cans and cigarette butt collectors in the city according to Keep Covington Beautiful which presented its mission to the city commission last Tuesday. The group's Vice President for Education & Outreach Danielle Eulitt and its litter abatement coordinator Sheila Fields also suggested that the trash cans that do exist are often overflowing with garbage because they are not picked up regularly. Other problems facing the cleanliness of the city include rampant graffiti, weeds growing in the sidewalks, and unkempt lots.

KCB presented a "litter scale" that it created showcasing the most littered neighborhoods on a scale of 0 - 3 with Austinburg, Eastside, Lewisburg, and Old Seminary Square scoring as the most littered at around 2.5. Botany Hills, Downtown, Licking Riverside, and South Covington scored close to 2. Latonia, Levassor Park, Monte Casino, Peaselburg, and Wallace Woods scored on the lower end at just over a 1.

An affiliate of Keep America Beautiful, KCB went to City Hall seeking the city's support and endorsement of the Adopt-A-Spot program as well as all of its litter abatement, beautification, and resource conservation initiatives.

"It will cost will cost us close to $8,000 to put on next year’s Great American Cleanup," said Danielle Eulitt. "We also have to look at budgeting for our Adopt-A-Spot program and how we can make that successful.  In other cities around the country the local solid waste companies sponsor and/or underwrite those programs. We would like to have a similar relationship here in Covington. That would certainly help get us on our way to making a significant impact.”

KCB grew out of a previous organization known as Covington Clean & Green but changed its name when the Center for Great Neighborhoods-backed group became an affiliate of KAB. Its leaders said that in order for the organization to grow, it needs a better partnership with a solid waste management company. The presentation noted, "A few hundred gloves and trash bags each year are certainly appreciated, however, true collaboration matching the support affiliates typically receive nationally is what is sorely needed. Other KAB Affiliates see support in the amounts of $40,000 -$200,000 depending on a community’s size and need."

Additionally KCB wants from the solid waste management company more community outreach, better recycling receptacles,  educational tools, more trash bins, and a composting option like what is being done in Cincinnati.  

KCB has proven to be effective in brining in money of its own with $30,000 from the Lowe's Community Improvement program that was leveraged to over $130,000 in local funding that went toward the Devou Park Back Country & Lewisburg Trails and the Sixth District School playground beautification effort.

Some other noticeable work by KCB includes the annual Great American Clean-Up along the riverfronts, neighborhoods, and the police memorial. Another concern of the organization is that its efforts go unnoticed and are often attributed to other organizations.

PHOTO: Trash can in Covington/Provided