Environmental Inspector Leslie Mitchell and Code Compliance Manager David Oliver accepted an invitation to attend the Keep Illinois Beautiful Annual Meeting in Springfield on Wednesday, May 2, 2012. Illinois currently has thirteen communities affiliated with Keep Illinois Beautiful, each of which is a Keep America Beautiful certified affiliate. Keep America Beautiful changes behaviors and improves communities through a focus on:
Litter Prevention: Defining litter, identifying the causes, and reducing it by organizing cleanups, and promoting proper handling of discarded waste in our communities.
Waste Reduction and Recycling: Reducing the impact of solid waste in our communities through integrated programs including responsible consumerism, source reduction and reuse, recycling and education about landfills, composting and waste-to-energy.
Beautification and Community Greening: Improving the visual aspects of our communities through programs that beautify and naturally clean our environment including community gardens, restoring vacant lots, highway and shoreline beautification, urban forests, native and wildflower plantings, and graffiti prevention and abatement.
Following the annual meeting, Cecile Carson from Keep America Beautiful introduced the revised “Waste in Place” educational guide for grades K – 6. The guide can be used by educators in the areas of environmental awareness. Representatives from each affiliate also shared their success stories from the previous year.
The Illinois EPA was the host for the meeting and provided information regarding a $6,000 Keep Illinois Beautiful grant that is given annually to each of the affiliate organizations in good standing with Keep America Beautiful. Seventy five percent of the grant funds must be dedicated to litter prevention, waste reduction or community beautification.