The public is lending a helping hand to clean up Los Lunas, thanks to a new program called Adopt-A-Roadway.
Utilities Director Betty Behrend, the program’s coordinator, says she is excited about kicking off the project, which is designed to increase litter awareness in the community.
“This is something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. People have asked me about it over the years. The community can really get involved.”
The Los Lunas Village Council approved the program’s policy last week, encouraging civic-minded organizations and individual citizens to volunteer. Local businesses and schools can also participate.
“There is a need for volunteer efforts in our community. We want to help the street department,” Behrend said. “The community can not only clean up trash, but they can help pick weeds along roadways.”
Volunteers must commit to picking up litter at least three times a year for a minimum of two years or as requested by the Adopt-A-Roadway coordinator. Trash bags and vests can be obtained from the village.
Adopt-A-Roadway is slated to start within a few weeks. At least one member of any organization must report when and where they are going to clean up roadways and how many bags of trash they pick up. The program policy requires every volunteer to have their permit with them when picking up trash along a specific length of roadway.
Folks throughout the community have already been picking up trash along Los Lunas roads, Behrend says.
“Some people are going out and cleaning the roads once every two or three months. The next day, it’s right back to being covered in trash.”
Areas such as Tondre Road, Los Lentes, Morris Road, Carson Drive and Juan Perea Road need extensive clean-up assistance.
“Some of these areas are bad. They are littered with bottles, cans and … (fast-food) bags that people throw out the window.
“This policy simply addresses the liability issues. We need to know when and where people are going to collect trash.”
For recognition, each person’s name, or that of the volunteer group, will be displayed with an Adopt-a-Roadway sign on the adopted roadway they will clean up. No phone numbers, slogans or street names will be permitted on the sign.
Areas may not be adopted by volunteers if the area is already adopted, if the work area is unsafe, visibility is too restricted or construction or other work is under way. If an organization or group decides to quit, you may be placed on a waiting list.
Start thinking about the section of roadway you want to adopt, and allow three to four weeks for sign placement. To submit a volunteer application, contact Behrend at 865-1377.