'Great Texas Trash Off' Set For April 5th - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

03/28/08 - Tyler

'Great Texas Trash Off' Set For April 5th

The Great Texas Trash-Off, the cornerstone event for the Texas Department of Transportation's "Don't Mess with Texas" campaign, has been scheduled for Saturday, April 5.

Around 200 crews of Adopt-A-Highway volunteers from various local businesses, clubs and agencies will be participating and showing their Texas pride by picking up trash along Texas highways across the Tyler District.

"The Adopt-A-Highway and Don't Mess with Texas programs are all about partnerships between TxDOT and the people we serve," said TxDOT public information officer Larry Krantz. "The annual Great Texas Trash-Off event helps us celebrate that partnership. We all need to work together to keep Texas beautiful and litter-free."

TxDOT is advising motorists to be on the lookout for these volunteer litter crews at work and drive carefully in their work areas.

About Adopt-A-Highway in Tyler

In an attempt to reduce the rising costs of litter clean-up, and encourage local residents to take more pride in beautifying their own communities, TxDOT established the Adopt-A-Highway program in 1984.

The Tyler District alone spends nearly $1 million per year on litter clean-up contracts.

The AAH program, which was founded right here in the Tyler District, has spread to 49 states and internationally to five countries, including Puerto Rico, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Japan.

For more information, or to volunteer for Adopt-A-Highway, contact the Tyler District office at 903-510-9100, or call 1-800-CleanTX.

Don't Mess with Texas and Adopt-A-Highway quick facts:

* Thirty-seven percent of Texans believe convicts pick up most of the state's roadside litter. However, hired crews pick up 90 percent of litter, which means your tax dollars are paying for the $32 million price tag for that service.

* In Texas, Adopt-A-Highway volunteers agree to pick up litter four times per year on a pre-determined stretch of highway, which saves the state an average of 2.5 million dollars per year.

* Statewide, Adopt-A-Highway efforts clean the sides of 8,000 miles of Texas roads each year, which accounts for 10 percent of all the state-level roads in Texas.

* One billion pieces of litter accumulate on the state-maintained highway system each year.

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