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Mayor's Office

2004 Media Releases

June 22, 2004
For More Information Contact:
Diane Gonzolas, Citizen Information Center, 441-7831
Harry Heafer, Keep Lincoln/Lanc.County Beautiful, 441-8035

Mayor Kicks Off Effort To Prevent Cigarette Litter
Lincoln one of nine U.S. cities conducting research project

Mayor Coleen J. Seng will kick off an effort to prevent cigarette litter at a news conference at 2 p.m. TODAY, Tuesday, June 22 at 120 North 14th Street. Lincoln is one of nine communities in the nation selected to participate in the Cigarette Litter Prevention Research Program. It is a project of Keep America Beautiful (KAB), a national, nonprofit public education and community improvement organization. About 20 specially designed cigarette butt receptacles have been installed in a two-block area of downtown, and public service messages are being displayed and aired in local media. About 3,000 pocket ashtrays will also be distributed in the area.

"Cigarette litter is a problem in many communities, including Lincoln," said Mayor Seng. "This project targets cigarette butts, packaging and lighting material, which are some of the most commonly littered items in our City. I am proud that Lincoln was chosen to participate in this research project and I am very encouraged that the businesses and property owners in downtown Lincoln are taking part. We all want downtown Lincoln to be attractive and clean."

Those involved in planning the project are Keep Lincoln & Lancaster County Beautiful, a program of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department and a local KAB affiliate; the Downtown Lincoln Association; the Downtown Neighborhood Association; the City Urban Development Department; the Lincoln-Lancaster County Planning Department; the Lincoln City Council; Keep Nebraska Beautiful; and the Citizen Information Center.

The test campaign will be conducted through August 31 in downtown. A cigarette litter count was conducted prior to starting the study, and another count will be taken at the end of August to determine the projectís effectiveness. The results of the research program will be released at KABís national conference in December in Washington D.C.

The mission of Keep Lincoln & Lancaster County Beautiful is to improve waste handling practices and increase environmental awareness through education and participation, and to keep the community litter-free. It is partially funded by a grant from the Litter Reduction and Recycling Fund administered by the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality. KAB, which has a network of more than 540 programs around the world, is in its 51st year. More information is available at

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