One of the laws passed by the state legislature in the 2013 session was SB 89. This bill, authored by Senator Ballenger and Representative Wesselhoft, increases the fine for littering from the maximum of $200.00 to up to $400.00, plus court costs. The bill passed with an emergency clause which allows it to take effect July 1, 2013.
In the same state statue there is a provision for “any person who deliberately places, throws, drops, dumps, deposits, or discards any garbage, trash, waste, rubbish, refuse, debris, or other deleterious substance on any public property or on any private property of another without consent of the property owner” to be punishable by up to $5,000.00 and/or 30 days imprisonment in the county jail.
Since there are several areas in Logan County where people feel free to dump along roadsides, this is a state law I whole-heartedly support. (To view what the county must deal with in regard to dumping, go to commissiondistrict2.com/HuxmkD.pdf) Recently an individual offered to pick up the litter along a well-traveled county road. Within a 2 1/2 mile section he collected 140 bags of trash.
All three districts in Logan County have taken advantage of the Solid Waste Program administered by the Association of County Commissioners of Oklahoma in which the Department of Environmental Quality provides funds for solid waste cleanup. From October, 2012, through February, 2013, District 2 provided dumpster roll-offs for people to dispose of their solid waste without cost. There are many residents who take pride in their surroundings and took advantage of the service. It was also a way for the county to remove trash from the roadsides and have a convenient way to dispose of it. I feel this program was successful in several ways, and we have already applied for funding to provide the same type of service this fall.
The new bill passed by the state legislature will be applicable to those who disregard the services which the county provides and continue to clutter the landscape with refuse. I encourage anyone who observes someone dumping trash on a county roadway to call the Logan County Sheriff’s department at 282-4100.