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Trash Potpouri
by Jerry A. Cegelske


April 01, 2004

"THANKS" to the Ketchikan Youth Court with the assistance of Gretchen Klein for their weekend clean up of North Tongass just north of town in one of the most littered sections of road. I greatly appreciate their work and I hope others do also. It is nice that the young people are responsible citizens in giving back to their community. They are a lot more mature than the people that allowed the litter to acumulate in the first place.

THERE'S HOPE! Today I observed a couple at a pull off at 8.5 mile S Tongass. He was looking through binoculars over the water while she was looking around at the trash. I pulled in and examined a litter pile I found. I was putting the trash into a yellow ALPAR bag to be picked up later when a voice asked if I had another bag. I turned around and the couple were nearby, and the man stated that they were disgusted by the trash. He introduced himself as Frank and stated that he did not understand how anyone could trash a place with so much natural beauty.

Frank Fronk of Plattsburg, N.Y. and Rachel Spromberg of Ketchikan, pick up trash...

In spite of his physical pain from a pinched nerve in bending over to pick up trash, Frank and Rachel (from Ketchikan) spent the next half hour picking up trash at the pull out. Frank stated that he had been here last year and came back due to the beauty of the country. He described how the New York area is free of most trash as the Troopers give out $500.00 fines for littering. Isn't it interesting that someone from New York likes the beauty of Ketchikan and Alaska so much that despite his pain, he wants to help make it a cleaner place for US to live in? Rachel said she did not understand why people are dumping the
trash when the dump is free. He works in pain to make it better and some of us can't get our trash to the dump for free disposal? Interesting. "Thank you" Frank and Rachel, for your efforts, I and most of Ketchikan appreciate it!


I apologize to the swine of the world for saying in the March 27th post that we should vote the pigs off the island. I feel I have insulted them as anyone who has worked with pigs knows that pigs are clean animals compared to many others. I feel their standards are much to high to allow them to be compared with the litterers and dumpers that leave their trash for others to clean up due to their laziness and lack of concern for others. I thought of the term Low Lifes but don't want to offend the halibut. So I guess it's rotten apples from now on!


A friend told me about driving to Lake Harriett Hunt and upon arriving there finding two mattresses. A Cape Fox tour associate was there and stated that there is usually something new dropped off every time he goes there. Word will soon get out that their tour is great if you want to see garbage. The sight of trash will stick in the tourists mind longer than the natural beauty of Alaska. If they don't want to look at the trash, why should they take the tour? Someone who was earning money helping tourists on the tours will no longer have a job due to lack of interest in the tours due to too much trash along the way. How much would you as a tourist pay to see beer bottles and cans, mattresses, and pallet burn piles? It is a cost to and a loss to this community. How much are we willing to pay to allow people to continue to dump and make messes?

In dollars, ten solid waste citations were issued in March along with six littering citations and three junk vehicle citations for $3200.00 in fines. The littering citations included one for an unsecured load. It may be a start but it won't stop many from continuing the practice of dumping trash.

Let's all work to keep Ketchikan clean.

Jerry A. Cegelske
Code Enforcement Officer
Ketchikan, AK - USA


#1 Frank Fronk Plattsburg, N.Y. and Rachel Spromberg,Ketchikan, pick up
trash at the pullout, California Head in the background.


Four bags of trash picked up in 1/2 hour.


Trash burn pile on way to Lake Harriett Hunt


Mattresses at Lake Harriett Hunt


Magazine remains in a burn pile on way to Lake Harriett Hunt


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and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.



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