§8-12-20. Authorizing municipalities to enact Adopt-A-Street programs.

(a) In addition to all other powers and duties conferred by law upon municipalities, municipalities are empowered to enact municipality Adopt-A-Street programs.

(b) The state Adopt-A-Highway Program was established in the late 1980s to improve the quality of the state’s environment by encouraging public involvement in the elimination of highway litter. That program is cosponsored by the Division of Highways and the Department of Environmental Protection, REAP Program. Its objective is to save taxpayer money by increasing public awareness and to serve as an educational tool by focusing on the consequences of littering. The program offers volunteers the opportunity to take charge of their own environment by making a positive effort to create a cleaner, more aesthetic place in which to live.

In West Virginia, there are currently 25,000 volunteers who regularly pick up litter on 4,000 miles of highway. They have been responsible for removing more than 40 million pounds of litter since the program began.

(c) As with the state program, individuals, families, churches, businesses, schools, civic organizations, government agencies, scouting groups, fraternities, and communities may participate in a municipality’s Adopt-A-Street program. Anyone who is at least 12 years old may participate. Any street that is maintained by that municipality is eligible for adoption, with the exception of interstates and streets deemed unsafe. Volunteers may select a street to adopt and then have it approved by the municipality, or they may ask the municipality to suggest an adoptable street. Alleys, dirt roads, and streets off the beaten path, as well as major streets, may be adopted. Adopted streets must be at least six blocks long.

(d) Adoptions are for a period of two years, during which time three cleanups are required per year. As volunteers pick up litter, bags that have been filled are placed on street sides for removal and disposal by the municipality. Garbage bags, safety vests, safety training, traffic warning signs, and gloves shall be furnished by the municipality.

(e) Adopted streets may be identified by a sign at each end of the section bearing the Adopt-A-Street logo and the name of the adopting entity. Volunteers who complete six required litter pickups within the two-year contract period are awarded a certificate of accomplishment signed by the mayor of the municipality.

Bill History For §8-12-20

1976 Regular Session
Senate Bill 66
1969 Regular Session
Senate Bill 2