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Ask Mr. Answer Person: Whose responsibility is it to clean up cigarette butts and garbage?

Posted: Tue, Mar 15, 2011 5:28 PM

Daina e-mails: "Now that the snow is receding, there is a lot of garbage (visible in) the snow banks.  Whose responsibility is it to pick up this garbage? The landowner whose property it is on? or the city street crews?"

Last year the City of Decorah tried to get the public to stop throwing cigarette butts and other garbage on sidewalks and streets.  Obviously, this campaign has a long way to go still before it's successful.

At that time city council member Karen Tjossem discussed cigarette butts, but her message could apply to all kinds of trash: "To throw them on the street or sidewalk is against our ordinances, but catching people in the act of throwing away their cigarette butts is difficult."

However, this problem has not gone away, so perhaps city government will again take up this issue this spring.

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