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Donna Baltakis, left, Keep Eunice Beautiful director, talks about a litter survey of Eunice during Tuesday's Eunice Board of Alderman's meeting at the Eunice Municipal Complex. At right is Anthony Baltakis. (Photo by Harlan Kirgan)

Survey finds Eunice a tad more littered

An annual survey of litter in Eunice found the city a bit worse off this year than in previous years, according to Donna Baltakis, Keep Eunice Beautiful director.
Baltakis delivered the report at Tuesday’s Board of Aldermen meeting at the Eunice Municipal Complex.
The neighborhood-by-neighborhood survey gave Eunice an overall score of 2.15, which is slightly littered, but that’s up from previous scores of 1.66, 1.51 and 1.58.
The scoring system is 1 to 4 with 1 being minimal or no litter and 4 the highest amount of litter.
“There are many places that are uninviting, in disrepair, abandoned, and littered,” Baltakis said. “Our neighborhood ponds, creeks and ditches are not inviting. They are a health risk to people and animals. We know this because of our litter index.”
The score by ward was: 2, Ward 1; 2.8, Ward 2; 2, Ward 3; and 1.8, Ward 4.
“So, this is distressing that it is getting worse, not better,” she said.
“We need to make code enforcement a priority and punish those who litter and punish those who refuse to care for their property,” he said.
The survey by Keep Eunice Beautiful volunteers found 22 abandoned cars, scores of lots filled with junk and overgrowth.
Aldermen responded to the report by requiring the code enforcement officer to report in person at the monthly board meetings no less than two littered sites that need to be cleaned up and abandoned property.
Mayor Scott Fontenot said a litter abatement program he started using city inmates to pick up debris has collected 1,500 bags in 10 months.
Fontenot said another factor is flooding brought in trash and the automated trash pickup has resulted in more debris on the streets.
Aldermen also:
— Voted to amend the city’s noise ordinance for city-sponsored events and provide for earlier closing hours at the Northwest Community Center.
— Agreed to hold a hearing on adjusting the city’s millage rates at 6:15 p.m. May 9.
— Approved a liquor license for Dollar General, 2420 W. Laurel Ave.

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