Michigan's "Adopt-A-Highway" program is one that should be adopted in all 50 states.
Without a doubt, our state's highways are among the cleanest in the country. We believe there are three important reasons for that, all of which complement the other.
First, we believe the "Adopt-A-Highway" does a valuable job in educating the public, through volunteers like their neighbors, of the value of a litter-free highway.
Second, we credit the state's 10-cent "bottle law" as a major reason for the lack of litter. At 10 cents a deposit, it discourages waste and litter.
Third, we believe Michigan residents understand the importance of a clean environment to our region's natural resources, and are more sensitive to keeping the environment as clean as possible.
The "Adopt-A-Highway" program began in Michigan in 1990. Volunteers adopt a two-mile stretch of highway and three times a year, head out to clean both sides of that road. Since its inception over a million bags of trash have been collected. Today there are 2,800 groups enrolled in the program and volunteers with those groups are responsible for 6,400 miles of highways in Michigan.
We believe these volunteers do a great job. In your out-of-state travels this summer look around, and we think you'll agree with that observation.
Michigan's "Adopt-A-Highway" program is the perfect partnership between government and volunteers. It is a glowing example of what can be achieved when people work together.