El Dorado, Ark., to create litter index

Apr 18, 2013

The city of El Dorado is working through its certification process to become an affiliate city of the Keep America Beautiful organization. Six volunteers will pile into a city van Saturday and drive dozens of miles crisscrossing El Dorado to complete what’s called a "litter index."

Keep El Dorado Beautiful chairwoman Janis VanHook said the passengers will mark a score card to evaluate the magnitude of litter in various areas of the city. VanHook said the litter index will help prioritize and focus beautification projects in the future.

“It will help us to identify the worst parts of town -- what needs the most work, what needs the least work.   Then, we can figure out where we need to dedicate our most energy," VanHook said.

This litter index is the first step to becoming an official Keep El Dorado Beautiful city. The survey must be completed on an annual basis. VanHook said city leaders recognize the importance of this designation because appearance is a huge component of tourism.

“We figured if we’re going to be considered the Festival City, we need to have the appearance of a beautiful, clean city," VanHook said. "The way to accomplish that is through Keep El Dorado Beautiful.”

VanHook's 20-member committee aims to finish the certification process by mid-August. The committee meets to discuss the litter index findings at its May 6 meeting at El Dorado City Hall.