Friday, April 17, 2015

South Burlington, VT Clean City Proposal

Clean City Standards Ordinance Proposal: 

South Burlington businesses are to maintain litter free storefronts / business properties, year round in order to protect our water, wildlife, and human health.

Meaning businesses will make sure that land under their control and to which the public have access (with or without payment) is kept free from litter and refuse year round.


The image of today builds the brand of tomorrow. ~Bernie


Lets make South Burlington the Signature image of a Clean City.  


Businesses are powerful role models for customers. Businesses maintaining clean, tidy and litter free premises have a positive influence on customer perception and behavior.   ~The Moray Council.

The quality of a city is reflected in the standards it sets. ~ Bernie

Littering will be difficult to stop until we recognize it as a serious problem. ~Univ of Missouri extension. ( Note: SB residents collected 2.3 TONS of bagged trash on Green Up Day 2015). (One Ton of litter is estimated at 20,000 visible itemsI consider 2.3 tons of littered trash accumulating on the ground in our city, for up to one year, to be a serious problem.  ~Bernie

...standards and conformity assessment activities boost business performance and innovation, lower costs... ~Standards Boost Businesses
June 19, 2015 Update:
Make SB The Signature Image of a Clean City.”

I propose a strategy towards making South Burlington “The Signature Image of a Clean City.”


The Goal: Meet the highest clean city standards we can attain as citizens and proprietors together.

Let us make our first objective – enact the South Burlington Clean City Ordinance.


Reason # xx to pass the Clean City ordinance proposal: Standards boost business performance and innovation, lower costs. One more value to SB businesses is the premium image created in people’s minds representing the best of Vermont….The qualities and values of Green & Clean. 

A standard is established by consensus and provides rules, guidelines, or characteristics for activities or their results. Do we have consensus we want proprietors to treat litter on storefronts like snow and pick it up shortly after it falls on the ground? Do we have consensus we want our SB businesses to be leaders in earning the Clean City image year round?

We all want to feel our best, to look our best, to be our best.

Contact your SB city councilors and ask them to pass and enact the Clean City Standards proposal.
 SB City Council email addresses:

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June 2 Update: 
Rebuttal (One persons reasons offered for not advancing the proposal at this time):
 1. A better avenue (and proven mechanism) to curtail litter in our community would be promotional campaigns including possible signage in problem areas. Organizations like the Rotary or the SBBA might support a 'Keep SB Clean and Green' campaign.

2. A majority of neighboring municipalities do not have litter management ordinances addressing the 'existence of litter' (many have ordinances against the 'act of littering').

3. The litter in South Burlington is not a problem deserving of a city ordinance that would further strain city resources in implementation, enforcement and documentation.

4. The closest municipality with a litter management ordinance has yet to enforce it (Essex Junction) nor do they intend to do so. They passed the ordinance in response to an an abandoned building that was deemed an eyesore.

5. Imprudent city ordinances with the force of law are problematic, confusing and can be costly. 
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Keeping the objective in mind (A clean City), and considering the rebuttal statements, my (Bernie's) next actions for consideration as of June 2, 2015 are:
1. Prepare and present (for inclusion in SB Comprehensive (5yr) plan) statement of desire for city to include the objective of a clean city partially achieved through year round timely, and measure-able litter management processes in public and proprietorship's landscapes.  Presented on June 9. * see appendix for text. 

2. Join SB Bike & Ped (Transportation) committee and or Open Space Natural Resource committe and seek their ideas and support for clean city objectives.

3. Identify similar size city with comparable climate that has best clean city / litter clean up policies / ordinances, and cost effective litter management actions. *See References section. 

4. Check pulse of community. Poll via Change.org, FPF, local paper, desire for clean city ordinance with the understanding of the costs to the city to administer.

5. Post polling, create official petition requesting ballot item on non binding clean city ordinance. Pass wording by city council before seeking signatures.

6. Photograph SB business sites that are littered (monthly). Send photos to city council (1x per month), to reinforce the problem dimension.

7. Seek Clean City discussion with SBBA (South Burlington Business Association) members. (Perhaps also with VBSR - Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility).

May 9 Update:
Be the Slogan - Clean City Campaign.
The city representatives are considering a unique slogan for South Burlington - "We are South Burlington, Vermont. A Different Place, Altogether".

I like the slogan, especially "altogether".

We can find many examples in our fine city where we as citizens and as a community have cherished attributes and amenities. Together we can grow more.

Lets set Clean City Standards to set us apart.
Then watch as citizens and businesses take actions to meet those new clean standards. The image of today builds the brand of tomorrow. 

Send a note to your SoBu councilors asking them to pass this proposed ordinance which directs businesses to treat litter like snow-pick it up within a day or two after it hits the ground. 

We don't want South Burlington's brand trashed on the ground!

Implement South Burlington Clean City Standards (ordinance) to set us apart. We are South Burlington, Vermont. A Different Place, Altogether. 

As Paris is Romance, South Burlington could be "The Signature Image of a Clean City.” 
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ORIGINAL POSTING 
APRIL 20, 2015
Clean City Standards (Litter Control) Proposal to South Burlington, Vermont City Council. April 20, 2015

         Press Release (one page summary) is on the last page below.


We have tonight, the opportunity to change for the better, the social norm of our community. The following proposal for South Burlington ordinances and resolutions pertains to litter control.  This paper demonstrates that the City of South Burlington should set clean city, litter free business standards, and city wide litter control management processes, and measurements to ensure year round compliance, and constant improvement.

Ask SB businesses to treat litter like snow. Pick it up within day or two after it hits the ground.

Purpose:  

The purpose of these proposed ordinances is, to set cleanliness standards and regulations for the control of litter in South Burlington, to set a bold and forefront path to a standout-clean Community.

The control of litter will have a lasting effect upon our city’s environment and appearance and earn South Burlington businesses and community, the highly valued Vermont clean branding.


Ask yourselves, why should we be tolerant of littered trash that degrades our city’s image?



Proposal Summary:

I.                Fortify the Vermont clean brand within South Burlington by directing all of our South Burlington businesses to maintain litter free properties year round.

II.             Initiate a city led, citizen driven [1]multi-faceted approach and management plan to eradicate or at least reduce litter in South Burlington, year round, for the sake of the health, and the economy of our community.

III.          Stimulate collaboration between the city offices and businesses, non-profits, schools, and citizens in order to expand litter picking and litter prevention activities in our South Burlington communities.

IV.          Commend those who support or take direct action(s) to help maintain a clean South Burlington environment.



This memorandum covers multiple points, to which I hope will favor this council to rule in support of the proposed ordinances and resolutions.






The reason for and the need of Proposed Ordinance CC-1 (Clean City -1) are: 

Although there is a focus on removing littered trash from our landscape on Green Up Day and during spring planting; unfortunately, outside those periods, there is a cumulative fall out of trash, which adds blight to our South Burlington business district and to our community overall.

Our Vermont image is described as pure, natural, beautiful and includes respect of the environment.

According to The Vermont Brand, a study by the O’Neil Strategy Group, a brand is a set of strong associations’ people have with a product, place or service. Brands exist in peoples’ minds, not in the product, place or service-itself. These associations are really expectations people have for that product, place or service.

Our businesses must constantly earn the valuable ‘Clean’ branding that Vermont conveys.

We know that littered trash is a detriment to both the health and the economy of our community.

Although some people view littered trash as the status quo. Some may have just stopped being conscious of the food packaging, plastic, and other littered trash. This does not make it benign, or an isolated or inconsequential problem.

Studies have shown that litter begets litter. That is, in general people are less apt to drop litter if the area is litter free, and more apt to drop litter at an area that is already littered.

Many of us share the opinion that ignoring littered trash is a behavior untrue to Vermont values and expect our businesses to align maintaining a clean litter-free on site environment, with other business objectives. 

We encourage our businesses to brand litter picking as a community building activity; helping to create cleanliness as a South Burlington social norm. 

It is easy to envision that a litter free community would be a social and economic benefit to South Burlington.

We support year round, clean, litter free South Burlington business properties, and public areas such as parks, schools, and roadways.

Electing clean storefronts is a matter of community pride. Moreover, it is a matter of differentiation for our South Burlington businesses.

The state statues and the existing South Burlington ordinances which give the council authority to adopt and enforce ordinances relating to prohibition of the accumulation of garbage, refuse and waste materials are documented below.  

The State of Vermont Statutes state:  the city shall have the powers guaranteed to towns and municipal corporations by the constitution and laws of this state together with all the implied powers necessary to carry into execution all the powers granted; and it may enact ordinances not inconsistent with the constitution and laws of the state of Vermont or with this [2]charter.

Whereas, The general grant of (South Burlington) ordinance-promulgating authority in section 103 (§ 13-104. Ordinances; subjects) shall include, but shall not be limited to, the authority: (4) “to adopt and enforce ordinances relating to regulation, licensing or prohibition of the storage and accumulation of garbage, ashes, rubbish, refuse and waste materials; regulation of the removal and disposal of such materials; …”.

  
Proposed Ordinance C.C.-1. (Clean City Standards-1)

South Burlington businesses are to maintain litter free storefronts / business properties, year round in order to protect our water, wildlife, and human health.

Meaning businesses will make sure that land under their control and to which the public have access (with or without payment) is kept free from litter and refuse year round.

     
(A) Businesses definition: To include but not limited to, stores, hotels, motels, gas stations, restaurants, bars, and commercial entities.

     (B) The responsibility for the removal of litter from business properties or                  receptacles shall be upon the owner(s) of the property or upon the business establishment residing at the property. It is the responsibility of the owners and operators of publicly patronized establishments to maintain their surrounding areas.

(C)   Business properties/storefronts include parking area, walkways, and green areas.

(D)   The emphasis is on the consistent and appropriate management of an area to keep it clean, not on frequency of cleaning. (Similar to snow, and ice, removal responsibilities.) This is dependent on effective monitoring of environmental conditions and the co-ordination of a carefully prioritized cleansing regime in response to litter trends, weather patterns and human activity.

(E)   We recommended that each business include in its operating procedures a zero litter policy for the outside of the business property similar to its indoor trash on the floor policy.

(F)   The cleanliness grades regarding litter are hereby defined as:


    1. Grade A    No litter or refuse (requirement on hard surfaces)

    2. Grade B   Predominantly free of litter apart from a few small items. (acceptable on soft surfaces)

    3. Grade C   Widespread distribution of litter with minor accumulations. (Unacceptable)

    4.  Grade D   Heavily littered with significant accumulations. (Unacceptable)

    5.  A grade (A) effectively means that no litter, in any form, is present on the land or parking lot, or walkways.

    6.    The presence of even one piece of litter or refuse automatically downgrades the environment to grade B. Grade (B) is an acceptable standard for areas with soft or other types of surfaces that are difficult to clean to a grade A. These include grassed and landscaped areas, and terrain such as earth.

   7.The presence of litter and refuse that is significant enough to form a few minor accumulations (grade C) or significant accumulations (grade D) on any surface, indicates non-compliance.


(G)   Clean up 'Response Times' are dictated according to the level of pedestrian and vehicular activity, and the type of land area use (type of business). Each type of land use area has a response time within which the business should return the property to an acceptable standard.

1.     High intensity of use (busy public areas, large parking lot may be indicative)

2.     Medium intensity of use (Small parking lot (less than 10 cars) may be indicative.)

3.     Low intensity of use (lightly trafficked areas. Offices might be indicative.)

4.     Areas with special circumstances (Where issues of health and safety and reasonableness and practicability are dominant considerations when undertaking cleansing operations).

There need to be standard response times because:

-If litter is left on the ground for days, by the time it is picked up many people have seen the degraded area. Over time that image becomes the community norm.

- We expect our businesses to clean up snow shortly after it falls onto the ground. Why not the same with litter?


- Litter begets litter. Littered areas promote littering behavior. Clean areas promote cleanliness behaviors.

  
 The table that follows can help you work out how quickly an area should be returned to cleanliness grade A.



High intensity of use
Medium intensity of use
Low Intensity of use
Special Circumstances
Nature of the area
Areas, which, through intense pedestrian and/or vehicular movements, are prone to fluctuations in the litter, refuse, and require both high levels of monitoring and frequent cleaning.
Areas affected by moderate levels of pedestrian and vehicular activity and therefore less prone to fluctuations in litter and refuse, usually situated outside retail or commercial activity, but used regularly by members of the public.
Areas subject to low or infrequent levels of pedestrian and vehicular activity and therefore less prone to fluctuations in litter and refuse, often located in office space, health facilities.
Types of land where issues of health and safety and reasonableness and practicability are dominant considerations when undertaking environmental maintenance work .
Maximum response time to restore to Grade A standard if it falls below grade B
One Day
Two Days
One Week
30 Days or as soon as reasonably practical


Type of land or area Use


Retail
Retail
All businesses in shared location of more than 2 businesses
All businesses in shared location of more than 2 businesses
Large grocery store

Restaurant, take out, gas stations
Restaurant, take out, gas stations

Hotel, Motel

Bars
Bars

Commercial

Office, Health org.


Industrial areas

   
  (H)  Where a litter problem is clearly traced to certain types of business, such as ‘food on the go’ establishments, grocery store (flyers); a local authority can issue a Street Litter Control Notice. This will compel the occupier, or the owner of business or retail premises, to clear up litter and implement measures to prevent the land from continued defacement.


   (I)  Litter Receptacles. To help prevent or reduce litter by pedestrians, we recommend that the owners of publicly patronized establishments provide and maintain publicly accessible litter receptacles on their premises.



Penalties for failure to comply with the cleanliness standards and or the actions called for in Ordinance L-1 are not being proposed at this time and as a compromise to businesses, none are being proposed for the future. The expectation is that businesses and the SBBA (South Burlington Business Association) will self police any out-liners - that is any businesses that are out of compliance. It is also an expectation that non compliance situations will be addressed by complying businesses who will assist in understanding any barriers to compliance, and give recommendations to the non compliant business.  

We can think of these three proposed ordinances not so much as regulations but as setting the expectations higher; setting standards of outdoor cleanliness which in turn will stimulate creative and collaborative litter clean up and prevention measures that will benefit us all. 

"This campaign (CC-1 portion) is really about winning souls not wagging big sticks. We are trying to get our businesses to brush their teeth as needed. We know and they know it is good for them. It is just a matter of raising expectations, (by setting standards) encouraging, facilitating, an helping to remove any barriers."

We don't want the SB brand trashed on the ground. Keep SB businesses Green and Clean.

Does SB need business cleanliness & litter cleanup response time STANDARDS? What is your opinion? Email me @bernie (dot)paquette@yahoo(dot)com

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While CC-1 addresses businesses specifically, CC-2 (Clean City-2) seeks to grow a citizen's grassroots involvement in developing and implementing  year round litter picking and litter prevention activities. 

Reason for Proposed Ordinance CC-2 (Clean City-2):

Whereas,  a multi-faceted approach is necessary to maintain a litter free community. When education (information, knowledge), enforcement (penalizing offenders) and engineering (making it easy and convenient) are integrated, attitude and behavior change are more likely to occur simultaneously.

Whereas, the Circle of Prosperity, (first articulated in Vermont back in 1997 by the Vermont Business Round-table), emphasizes the fact that economic development and healthy communities are a system, involving the collective and sometimes coordinated actions of many individuals, businesses, and institutions.


Proposed Ordinance CC-2. (Clean City-2)

We resolve to collaborate with interested parties such as South Burlington businesses, rotary, schools, and scouts, to explore both public and private initiatives to facilitate picking up litter shortly after occurrence, and address littering behaviors.

 This includes installing and maintaining more readily accessible trash and recycling containers for the public to deposit litter, recyclables, and cigarette butts at public and business locations.

Moreover, to give particular focus to high traffic areas that commonly experience littering in our community.  


(A) City Council to solicit a volunteer citizens and business group. (Perhaps invite a college ‘intern’ to join the committee even if not a SB resident.)



Look beneath the surface. 
Address the issues. 
Expand the conversation.

(B)  The citizen and business group should be tasked with periodic evaluations and process improvement- including:


1.     Litter management reviews: Determine litter control best practices.

     A.    Solicit and encourage business support of litter control measures.

     B.    Create incentive programs. (For example, a yearly ‘Golden Broom Award’ for            business with best cleanliness, litter-free results and litter control management               processes.)

2.     Cleanliness monitoring:  Measure cleanliness levels, and assess improvements, over time.

A.    Business litter scorecard (similar to Health Dept. restaurant food scorecard) Publish quarterly.

          B.    Catalog of Litter surveys: Categorize the litter in sample surveyed areas, and record quantities, types, and percentage of total by type. Utilize data to help determine source of most predominant litter materials.


      3. Attitude and awareness: Gather public sentiment on perception of litter in the city, on cleanup activities, and on local business performance against clean standards.

           4.    Identify solutions for specific; consistent litter issues (For example, escaped grocery store ads/flyers).

           5.    Publicize cleanliness standards. Inform citizens of the standards of cleanliness they can expect and the action to take if they are dissatisfied.

           A.   Identify the steps to record and deal with the complaint and timescale for responses.

      6.   Manage cigarette litter as a specific challenge. (Prevention, education (butts are litter), promote installation of ash containers /cig. butt depositories).

      7.  Create and present a litter education package to SB students. (or seek to delegate to another group)


      8.   Encourage and promote the Adopt-a-block campaign. Citizens sign up to pick up litter periodically in a public area of the city of their choosing-for a term of one year.  

      9.   Solicit and Encourage SB school students to create and implement their own litter reduction programs. (Ex. Litter songs, litter online arcade games, Green Up Day Poster and writing contest participation, litter videos, PSA.).
  
    10.   Solicit and Encourage nonprofit groups like scouting, and SB Rotary to implement their own litter related programs.

    11. Organize ‘Fall Sweep’ campaign for pre-snow annual citywide litter clean up in November.

        12.   Encourage SB citizens, especially students to utilize [3]Litterati’ / instagram as a fun way to clean up litter

        13.    Host Red Rocks Beach cleanup event annually

        14.   View my[4]web page under the ‘Got Talent?’ tab to see more litter cleanup campaign starter-seed ideas.


For continuitycontinuous improvement and to measure results:

Proposed Ordinance CC-3. (Clean City -3)

 We (City Council and City Mgr.) further resolve to take a read out each year in April in order to gauge effectiveness and status of said South Burlington litter reduction initiatives.




Resolutions CC-4, CC-5, CC-6 (Clean City 4, 5,6):
The purpose of these three resolutions is to commend those who support or take direct action(s) to reduce litter in South Burlington. 


Whereas, caring, and contribution help build community,


Resolution CC-4:
 Now therefore let it be resolved, the city of SB City Council and City Manager hereby commend and thank the members of the SBLT (South Burlington Land Trust) for managing the SB Green Up Day drop off site at City Hall, running the ‘Unusual Litter Find’ contest, and for promoting participation in SB Green Up Day.


Resolution CC-5:
 Now therefore let it be resolved, The city of SB City Council and City Manager hereby commend and thank the businesses and citizens of South Burlington who participate in, and otherwise support South Burlington’s Green Up Day.


Resolution CC-6:
Now therefore let it be resolved, we hereby commend and thank the citizens of South Burlington that have pledged to Adopt-a-block, and who pick up litter year round in each their chosen street, park, or other public area within our South Burlington community. 

For 2014 those included but not exclusive of: Marga & Glenn Sproul, Ann Slatery, The Scarpa Family, Kelsey Hudson, Rosanne Greco, Paul Engels, Jane Boisvert, Walter Luchini, Susan Saferstein,  Maida Townsend, and Chris Shaw.

In Conclusion,

Many of our businesses and many of our citizens of South Burlington demonstrate great pride in our city by picking up litter on both public and private domains, with particular focus on Green Up Day and during spring planting.

However, litter is visible throughout the year at many of our city’s business locations.

How long litter remains on business properties remains inconsistent without a set of standards and expectations set by the city. Without these standards, litter attracts more litter, debasing the image of South Burlington.

Litter free standards serve to support the health of our environment, the health of our citizens, as well as the economy of our city.

We expect our businesses to earn Vermont’s clean branding continually. We expect SB businesses to advance pride in community by maintaining litter free business properties year round.  

The City of South Burlington should set clean city, litter free business standards, and litter control management processes, and measurements to ensure year round compliance, and constant improvement.

The city should also take an annual read out on a Clean City dept or committee regarding business compliance, litter surveys, best practices, and celebrate successes.

As citizens of South Burlington, we respectfully ask the council members and the city manager to review this analysis, the points of argument, and resolve to adopt and implement as is or in similar form.

Thank You City Council members and City Manger for consideration of these proposed litter ordinances.

Let us make our street the cleanest in our city, our city the cleanest city in the state.


Respectfully submitted,
Bernie Paquette, SB VT
April 2015 
            

Footnotes


[1]  A multi-faceted approach is necessary to maintain a litter free community. When education (information, knowledge), enforcement (penalizing offenders) and engineering (making it easy and convenient) are integrated, attitude and behavior change are more likely to occur simultaneously.
[2] The Vermont Statutes Online Title 24 Appendix: Municipal Charters Chapter 13: CITY OF SOUTH BURLINGTON Amended 2/1/12
[3] Litterati: 1. Find a piece of litter. 2. Photograph it with Instagram. 3. Hashtag your photo with ‘Litterati’. 4. Throw away, recycle, or compost the piece of litter. Source http://www.litterati.org/
[4] http://www.litterwithastorytotell.blogspot.com/


Definition of Litter:
"Litter – including but not limited to, trash, rubbish, refuse, such as paper, cans, and bottles, cigarette buttsthrown, tossed, dropped, left lying in an open or public place.

Vt State Litter Laws Sec. 3. 24 V.S.A. ' 2201 …refuse; bottles,glass,  crockery,cans,scrap metal, plastic, solid waste as defined in 10 V.S.A. ‘6602, junk paper garbage, old automobiles, or parts thereof, refuse of whatever nature, or any noxious thing

References

1. ***** Scotland's Strategic plan to manage litter problem. 
2. Lynchburg VA litter ordinances.
3. Illinois litter ordinance. 
4. States with littering penalties. 
5. Long Branch New Jersey litter ordinances.
6. Troy Alabama litter ordinances.
7. **Britain litter ordinances.
8. **The Scottish Govmt. litter ordinances.
9. ***The Moray Council, Scotland. Litter ordinances. (And business voluntary code of practice & pledge form-to assess causes, types and locations, then work together to adopt solutions to reduce litter ).
9. Rhode Island Litter Task Force public survey. 
10. KAB focus area survey. 
11. *** Standards Boost Business
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I would be happy to discuss in more detail and listen to any concerns with the proposals with anyone. I can be flexible on time and place. I am seeking invites to any interested group or organization including business orgs. to present the proposals and open for discussion and debate and to seek opinions, feedback, recommendations.


Does South Burlington need business cleanliness and litter clean up response time standards? Whats your opinion? Email me @ Bernie(dot)paquette@yahoo(dot)com 

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Burlington Free Press 'My Turn' Editorial (click to open link)
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May 7, 2015 letter to SB City council and City Mgr.

City Councilors, City Mgr. ,

First, Thank You Meaghan for taking time to meet with me and discuss in more detail and to share your "in the weeds" questions relative to my Clean City ordinance proposals. I get that the details are important part of implementing the Clean City Standard proposal. Debate and discussion are valuable tools to identify and start resolving any barriers, and to bring out the best ideas as well as to morph existing ideas. This both Tom C. and Meghan have demonstrated through much discussion on the proposal and supporting details.

Secondly, I invite each of you to contact me if you wish to set up a time to meet individually at Barnes & Nobles or other local coffee shop to discuss the proposed concept of setting a Clean City standard ordinance - and or if you are sold on the concept but need help with the "weeds" or details. 

Setting the clean city standards/expectations is to create fertile ground from which seeds of clean up and prevention ideas will grow, and where existing clean up ideas will flourish and take better root.

Businesses and citizens will embrace the clean standards, feel more pride therein and work to bolster the clean city image. 

Setting the standards will help set our city's identity. We can use the clean brand to craft a message of community pride, what our place is about, demonstrate our values, and tell a story of a creative, empowered, and most importantly caring and engaged business and citizen community. 

Set the standards, and watch the community embrace those standards and find ways to fulfill them. 

These (proposed) ordinances can be driven by positive reinforcement, peer pressure, and public sentiment through vision, and aspiration instead of through negative reinforcement of penalties if not met. 

Lets Deploy and set the wings of clean aloft!


Community building is best had with many hands at the table striving for the same goal albeit in each their own way. 

Bernie Paquette

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------      PRESS RELEASE 
(Published in The Other Paper, April 30, 2015)
Clean City Ordinance Proposal
On Monday April 20, I offered the South Burlington City Council a proposal for ordinances and resolutions pertaining to litter control. The purpose of these ordinances is, to set standards and regulations for the control of litter in South Burlington, to set a bold and forefront path to a standout-clean Community. 

It is the purpose of these proposed ordinances to help preserve the public health, safety, and economic well being of South Burlington, by requiring businesses to manage their properties in such a manner as to keep them clean (free of litter) year round. Also to provide objectives and seed material for grassroots citizen and city driven campaign(s) to reduce litter in SB.  

The emphasis is on the consistent and appropriate management of an area to keep it clean, not on frequency of cleaning. (Similar to snow, and ice, removal responsibilities.) How long litter remains on business properties remains inconsistent without a set of standards and expectations set by the city.

Ask yourselves, why should we be tolerant of littered trash that degrades our city’s image?

Proposal Summary:
I.   Fortify the Vermont clean brand within South Burlington by directing all South Burlington businesses to maintain litter free properties year round.

II. Initiate a multi-faceted approach and management plan to eradicate or at least reduce litter in South Burlington, year round, for the sake of the health, and the economy of our community.

III. Stimulate collaboration between the city offices and businesses, non-profits, schools, and citizens in order to expand litter picking and litter prevention activities in our South Burlington communities.

IV. Commend those who support or take direct action(s) to help maintain a clean South Burlington environment.

Proposed Ordinance LC-1

 South Burlington businesses will maintain litter free storefronts / business properties, year round in order to protect our water, wildlife, and human health. Meaning businesses will make sure that land under their control and to which the public have access is kept free from litter and refuse year round.


Many businesses and many citizens of South Burlington demonstrate great pride in our city by picking up litter on both public and private domains, with particular focus on Green Up Day and during spring planting. However, litter is visible throughout the year at many of our city’s business locations.

The City of South Burlington should set clean city, litter free business standards, and litter control management processes, and measurements to ensure year round compliance, and constant improvement.

The city should also take an annual read out on a Clean City dept or committee regarding business compliance, litter surveys, best practices, and celebrate successes.

As a citizen of South Burlington, I respectfully ask the council members and the city manager to review this analysis, the points of argument, and resolve to implement as is or in similar form.

The full memorandum covers multiple points, and detailed line item recommendations to which I hope will favor this council to rule in support of the proposed ordinances and resolutions. View the full report @ http://www.litterwithastorytotell.blogspot.com/.

Let us make our street the cleanest in our city, our city the cleanest city in the state.
Respectfully submitted,
Bernie Paquette, SB VT
April 2015
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Appendix
Presented to Planning Commission on June 9, 2015


I request inclusion of the following items into the South Burlington five year Comprehensive plan.
Consider noting recognition of litter as a serious problem and a clean city as a brand and identity opportunity.
Goal: Consider setting the goal of continuous improvement year round towards a clean city.
Objective: Create management processes and regulations to manage litter in public and business landscapes.
Below are objectives that are more specific.

1.   The quality of a city is reflected in the standards it sets. Clean city standards can help build community pride, tell a part of our story, what we are about, and demonstrate our values. Therefore, please include the objective of a clean city standard (litter control) achieved partly through year round, timely, measureable litter management processes and regulations affecting public and private business landscapes.  The purpose of which is to protect our water, wildlife, and human health as well as our city’s image and brand. Littering will be difficult to stop until we recognize it as a serious problem. Keep in mind that Litter is primarily a problem due to a lack of concern and pride for the environment or improper waste handling and disposal practices. People tend to litter in places where, they feel no sense of personal ownership, litter has already accumulated and there are insufficient trash receptacles.  
2.   Develop and implement Cleanliness Monitoring to measure cleanliness level over time and identify problem areas.  
3.   Promote increased participation in the current successful SB Green Up Day program, and the fledgling but growing Adopt-A-Block program.
4.   Organize, facilitate and promote a yearly Fall Sweep campaign similar to Green Up Day only occurring in the fall season (in addition to the spring Green Up Day event.)
5.   Develop a comprehensive education and outreach campaign to reduce litter citywide. Sponsor interdepartmental school and public education program to include litter prevention.
6.   Begin a pilot program of installing a few solar powered trash compactors in high traffic, high littered public areas.
7.   Explore public/private partnerships for litter prevention and control (year round cleanup).

8.   Single-use bags and expanded polystyrene are two materials that are increasingly targets of product bans around the country. These materials are not biodegradable and have life spans of hundreds of years. These materials negatively affect the collection system and, when littered, negatively affect the natural environment and harm wildlife. Therefore consider developing ordinances with the goal of reducing or eliminating consumption and generation of the following products: • Single-use bags; • Non-recyclable, non-compostable take-out containers; and • Single-use beverage containers.