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Mayor Gray Announces Kickoff of the Metropolitan Police Littering Enforcement Pilot Program

Thursday, April 28, 2011
Effort will step up enforcement of laws against littering, starting in the Fourth District.


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(WASHINGTON, DC) – Mayor Vincent C. Gray today announced that the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) would begin a pilot project May 1 to enforce laws against littering by writing tickets and imposing penalties on pedestrians as well as motorists who litter.

“Clean cities are livable cities,” Mayor Gray said. “But the Department of Public Works can’t be expected to clean up after all of our residents. Sometimes we have to bring the force of law to bear to make sure our residents and visitors treat our city as they would their own homes. This program helps us do that.”

Throughout May, MPD will issue warnings to violators as they work with community partners to educate the public about littering enforcement. Beginning June 1, 2011, anyone violating the city’s littering law in the MPD’s Fourth District (which covers much of Ward 4 and part of Ward 5) may be issued an actual ticket or be subject to arrest.

If an officer sees an individual intentionally or carelessly dropping waste material of any source on public space, in waterways, or on private property not controlled by the individual, he or she may receive a $75 ticket for littering. Failure to properly respond by following the instructions on the back of the ticket will result in additional penalties.

Those cited are required to provide an accurate name and address to the issuing officer. Those who refuse or fail to provide an accurate name and address can be arrested. Upon conviction, non-cooperative litterers will be fined an additional $100 to $250 by the D.C. Superior Court.

While the pilot is in effect, MPD will continue citywide enforcement of the prohibition against disposing, causing, or allowing the disposal of litter from a vehicle on any public or private property, subject to a $100 traffic ticket.