BROOKSVILLE - Heavy downpours have been the norm this summer in Hernando County.
When that happens, much of the litter that dots the landscape is washed into nearby water sources, Assistant County Administrator for Operations Brian Malmberg told county commissioners Tuesday.
To that end, commissioners voted unanimously to relax the guidelines on the county's Adopt-A-Road program in hopes of drawing more participants to the volunteer program.
Staff took a look at what surrounding counties were doing and tweaked the program to make the following changes:
Volunteers may adopt only a one-mile stretch of county-maintained roadway instead of the current two miles.
They must agree to pick up litter a minimum of four times per year instead of the current six.
They must attend one safety training meeting per year, down from two.
County Commissioner Diane Rowden recommended staff approach high-school students enrolled in programs or clubs and who need a certain number of community service hours.
"You're hitting our younger people on how important it is not to litter," Rowden said.
County Commissioner Jim Adkins, who made the motion to amend the program regulations, got assurances from staff that the trash collected by volunteers would be collected as soon as possible after it is bagged and placed by the road.
The Division of Transportation Services/Department of Public Works oversees the maintenance and operation of the public roads in Hernando County.
That includes litter and debris pick-up within rights of ways.