A new litter control program that brings in the business community to help in the effort is now under way in Ohio. Over the past few weeks, the first signage related to the Sponsor-A-Highway program has been installed along highways in the northeast Ohio area. The statewide program allows businesses and groups to fund litter removal services along one-mile, one-direction segments of state highways. In exchange for their sponsorship, the name of the business or group is displayed on a sign within their sponsored segment.
The program is administrated through the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) but at no cost to the state. The financing of the program is through the sponsorships of the businesses who choose to become involved. “The need to do more regarding litter prevention and abatement came at the direction of Governor Mike DeWine. The appearance of our highways is important to Governor DeWine, and to us as the state agency charged with maintaining highways and interstates,” said Jack Marchbanks, ODOT director. “This new program provides support to us in our litter control efforts and allows area businesses the opportunity to promote their advocacy for cleaner highways in their communities,” he said.
Segments are cleaned a minimum of once per month by employees working for two separate vendors who were awarded the contracts for the state. Similar programs are in place in over half the states in the nation. The program complements ODOT’s existing Adopt-A-Highway program, where volunteer groups adopt a two-mile segment of two-lane highway. “With this program, area businesses may share in the task of litter removal along our highways,” said Marchbanks.