The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) is advocating the public to call the "Litterbug Hotline" whenever they witness somebody littering or observe an illegal dumping site.
The "Litterbug Hotline" is now housed inside the LDWF Enforcement Division and littering tipsters can call 1-888-LITRBUG or 1-888-548-7284 to report any potential littering violations.
"This hotline is being manned 24 hours a day and we welcome all littering clues and complaints from the public as we strive to keep Louisiana's roadsides, woods and waterways clean," said Col. Winton Vidrine, head of the Enforcement Division. "Each tip will be investigated by our agents and other litter law enforcement agency partners."
Those convicted of litter violations face between $75 and $1,000 in fines and up to eight hours in a litter abatement work program. Dumping violations can carry even more penalties and higher fines depending on the severity of the dumpsite and the damage to the environment.
If witnessing somebody throwing trash out of a vehicle window or trash blowing out of a pickup truck bed, please call the hotline with the make, model and color of the vehicle and the roadway location. The hotline is also the number to call for detecting or knowing of an unauthorized trash or dumpsite. All callers can remain anonymous.
As a part of the Governor's Office strategy to streamline public services, the LDWF Enforcement Division communication's section took over the litter hotline from the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. The LDWF Enforcement Division communication's section also handles the Operation Game Thief hotline that takes calls for hunting and fishing violation tips.
Since June 1, the Enforcement Division has received 474 calls through the hotline including 161 calls from East Baton Rouge Parish and 61 from St. Tammany Parish.
LDWF Enforcement Division agents issued 1,001 littering citations for fiscal year 2009-10 and logged 7,958 patrol hours for littering enforcement.
According to Keep Louisiana Beautiful, littering costs Louisiana taxpayers $40 million annually in cleanup fees. Littering also contributes to flooding, lowers property values and damages wildlife habitat.
For more information, contact Adam Einck at 225-765-2465 or firstname.lastname@example.org.