Town concerned about litter on gravesites

First Posted: 1/15/2009

Employees at the Red Springs Town Hall deal with the public everyday about the welfare of the town. Whether it be about someone’s electricity being turned on or off; a tree limb lying in a residents yard that needs to be picked up and disposed of; or to answer general questions about where to send a bill; they do their best to get them taken care of.
One concern has come to light and Town Manager Billy Joe Farmer wants to nip it in the bud before it becomes an eyesore within the town but is not placing the blame on anyone.
It seems there is a problem of litter beginning to accumulate in the old McNeill Cemetery on Coppage Street in Red Springs. Not that people are deliberately placing it there but the way it is being piled up for pickup by the town. The wind gets hold of it and before long, it has covered some of the old gravesites there.
“From time to time, residents have put out things (in that area) for the town to pick up because it a service we provide,” said Mr. Farmer. “Recently, by accident, some of it had ended up over the gravesites. I’m sure, this was not the intent. So, what the town would like to do is, even though we know that it’s no one intention, is to encourage everyone not to put anything anywhere over the in the cemetery, even if its away on one side from all the gravesites”
Farmer says just driving by and seeing the debris or trash on a loved ones grave, wouldn’t look proper.
“The whole cemetery has kind of a sanctity to it and we want to preserved that and ask for everyone’s help,” said Farmer. “ We’re not telling anyone that anybody’s been doing anything wrong, but we just want to ask for everyone’s help in assisting us, the town, to preserve the sanctity of this cemetery. I know it’s a real delicate matter, but we’re just asking for everyone’s assistance in helping to do this.”
According to Farmer, people in town have been placing trash and debris along side the streets for the town to pick up because its been the normal thing to do.
However, Farmer says that it has come to attention after receiving one complaint from a resident that some people are beginning to go through trash, moving things about and then some of the debris is ending up on the side of the cemetery and then blowing into it.
“Looking at the whole matter, we believe that the entire cemetery is an area that really shouldn’t see trash piled up anywhere,” adds Farmer. “We want to keep the sanctity of the whole place and with everybody’s understanding and help, we can do this.”
Residents may not know or remember, but Farmer said there is a town ordinance stating that it is the residents duty to call the Town when there is trash to be picked up for disposal.
“We went to also encourage people to call us when they put out huge piles of trash to be picked up,” said Farmer. “They may not know it, but there is a Town ordinance, stating that a call me made.”
There is a lot of traffic that comes through Red Springs daily and Farmer feels that when people see the trash, they have many thoughts.
“We want to look at everything like someone is coming to Red Springs for the first time and they see the stuff,” said Farmer. “Would it turn you off to our community or, would it make you say that this looks like a nice community? Looking from that perspective, we don’t want trash to sit by the side of the road and we don’t want to see trash in our cemeteries.” Farmer said that the two cemeteries in Red Springs (McNeill and Alloway Cemetery on North Vance Street) are under contract for its upkeep.
“We just want to make the town look as attractive as we can,” said Farmer. “We want to make it a placed that when people do come, they’ll be thinking that this is just a great looking town.”
Farmer advises that when residents do have trash piled up, to call Town Hall. The number is 910-843-5241.

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