More than 300 City of LaGrange employees cleanup city

Published 6:45 pm Friday, April 20, 2018

City staff, council members and citizens walked the streets of LaGrange on Friday morning to pick up litter in the city.

All city offices — with the exception of essential services like police and fire — closed for the morning for the event. The event is part of an anti-littering campaign that was recently launched by the City of LaGrange in partnership with Troup County, West Point and Hogansville.

“I applaud the efforts of city staff for ‘Leaving LaGrange Better than We Found It’ today,” City Manager Meg Kelsey said in an email. “Two 30 yard containers of litter were removed from the gateways of our community. We are committed to continuing to improve the quality of life and the aesthetics of LaGrange. I am hopeful that this will become an annual event.”

Roughly 300 City of LaGrange employees participated in the event, and they were provided with lunch after the cleanup.

“I think it sends a message about how important keeping our community clean is,” Mayor Jim Thornton said. “[County Commission] Chairman [Patrick] Crews and I tried to start this campaign a couple of months ago, and the city manager thought this would be a really important message for all the city employees to take half a day and to go out and pick up trash in the community.”

Prior to Friday’s cleanup, the city released a video encouraging citizens to keep the community clean, and city staff were encouraged to take time to pick up trash while performing other jobs out in the community. 

The idea of city staff picking up litter was first proposed by Council member Nathan Gaskin.

“We’re just out here trying to make the community better for everyone to enjoy,” Gaskin said in an interview with LGTV. “This is a beautiful city, and it is going to get even greater one step at a time.”

Kelsey proposed the citywide cleanup, and the results were clearly visible throughout the LaGrange.

“We’re here on Vernon, but we’ve got all the main entrances to the city covered,” Thornton said. “I hope that it will spread. I hope that people will want to take an interest in keeping the community clean, and it is good timing with Earth Day weekend and the Keep America Beautiful campaign that is going on this weekend.”

According to Katie Van Schoor, the City of LaGrange marketing and communications manager, city staff found several odd items in addition to the paper and bottles that were cleaned up. Some of those items included a washer and dryer, tires, furniture and even drugs.