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Programs

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Tarp Program

The Tarp Program provides for the free distribution of tarps by enforcement officers and government officials to the driving population of Rome and Floyd County in order to decrease the amount of litter from uncovered truck beds.

Current Initiative

KRFB wants to be proactive in litter prevention. “Free” is key to the success of this program. To date, Keep Rome Floyd Beautiful has spent over $3,000 to make free tarps available to the driving public – a drop in the bucket compared to the millions spent each year in picking up roadside litter.

Approximately 94,000 people live in Floyd County, 36,000 of whom are City residents. Our specific target audience includes pickup truck drivers and employees of businesses and industries involved in construction. According to Floyd County Tag Office estimates, approximately 90,000 vehicles are registered in the county. A large percentage of that estimate includes pickup trucks.

By covering truckloads properly, the physical community can be spared the ugliness caused by roadside litter. By halting offending vehicles, the community of enforcement officials and landfill operators becomes increasingly familiar with state and local litter ordinances and is more comfortable enforcing those statutes. And finally, the driving community becomes more aware of its responsibility to secure truckloads or clean out truck beds before driving. We hope to effect a positive change in all of these communities with this tarp program.

 

Background

This program was conceived by Mr. Ralph White, a volunteer member of KRFB and longtime worker in the construction industry. This program developed very quickly because of Ralph’s personality and enthusiasm. Ralph wanted to help spread the word to builders and subcontractors about the importance of using a tarp to cover loads being hauled in the back of pickup trucks and in government and commercial vehicles. Ralph is recently retired from Builders Hardware and in September, 2005, he used his business connections to secure 500 tarps at cost. Our board met and discussed the fact that KRFB was presented with a unique opportunity to actively do something about roadside litter and we jumped at the opportunity to fund the purchase of the first 500 tarps. Although the local construction industry was initially targeted, it was soon agreed to expand the focus to include any vehicle operator in violation of O.C.G.A. §40-6-254.

Beginning in late September, 2005, Ralph and Mary Hardin Thornton, director of KRFB, began a campaign to promote the program by visiting with law enforcement officials, landfill operators, local builders and contractors, and Department of Natural Resource rangers. While meeting with the various agency representatives, discussion was initiated about the best way to effectively distribute the tarps, monitor the distribution, and ensure that the message was being delivered to the recipients. The main area of distribution is the Walker Mountain Landfill. Tarps distributed at the Landfill are spray painted with the letters “LF” and usage is visually tracked by the scalehouse attendants. Promotional materials from the KRFB office were created for distribution along with the tarp as well as information from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.