Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed says for the most part St. Louis is a clean city but it could be cleaner.
One of his pet-peeves is the amount of wrappers, lids and bags he sees blowing around fast-food restaurant parking lots.
He's introduced a bill requiring restaurants with drive-thrus to place at least one trash can accessible to drivers in the drive-thru lane between the pick-up window and the street. The idea is that would get customers to toss the trash in the can rather than on the lot.
I went to four fast-food lots today. Two of them (a Taco Bell downtown and McDonalds in South St. Louis) already have a trash can in their lanes. But guess what?... I still saw trash all over the place. Used napkins and cup lids blowing in the lot. A bag that had been runover... you get the idea.
I asked Lewis Reed and some other people I met outside the restaurants today if they think the trash cans (at restaurants that don't already have them in their drive-thru lanes) will really make a difference.
Everyone I talked to said they believe it would... to an extent.
It's really up to individuals not to use the ground as their own personal dumping ground but people do it all the time.
You can be fined up to $500 for littering, but how often does an officer catch someone in the act? Not often enough.
But the risk of a fine shouldn't be the motivator here to stop littering. A little pride in one's surroundings and exercising personal responsibility should be all the motivation we need to just toss our garbage in the trash.