Desoto County News

DeSoto has been “cleaning up” on the environment

Photo: Information on the environment and DeSoto County’s clean up efforts were available during Saturday’s Earth Day activities on the Hernando Courthouse Square. (Bob Bakken/

During the past week, residents have been encouraged to focus on cleaning up the world they live in, specifically DeSoto County.  

It’s been Spring Clean Up Week in the county, added by the placement of 14 dumpsters set up across the county for residents to bring trash for deposit. 

There’s also been specific efforts for picking up litter and cleaning trash off the roadside during the week, as well.

Residents have apparently taken the “cleaning the environment” mantra to heart, as Supervisor Mark Gardner observed, complimenting the county and all of its cities.  

“Our county has really come alive this week picking up trash,” Gardner remarked. “We have picked up tons and tons of trash on the side of the road.”

A County Cleanup Day was held on April 13, an event many participated in, including Gardner. 

“I can’t tell you how many McDonald’s cups and whiskey bottles and beer cans I picked up last Saturday,” Gardner said. “But it was a bunch and in a half mile section, we picked up over 20 bags of trash.”

County Director of Environmental Services/Parks and Greenways Ray Laughter added, I’ve been doing spring cleanup for 15 years now. This is by far the most participation we’ve had in a year. It’s been a great event so far.” 

One item Gardner mentioned was that it is illegal for trucks to operate on county roads with uncovered loads blowing out of the rear of the vehicle. Residents are asked to call those trucks.

“Call the non-emergency number of the local police department or the Sheriff’s Department and let them know,” Gardner said. “It is against the law to have an uncovered load blowing out on the roads and that’s part of our problem.”

Gardner added the Sheriff’s Department has committed inmate labor to be back on the roads collecting trash from the roadside, with Laughter adding, “They have been doing it about four days a week now. Our office coordinates where they go and they’ve been doing an excellent job.”  

Hernando Mayor Chip Johnson credits a retired person working with the city who picks up trash in the downtown area and in areas of his city where a trash problem is reported. But Johnson added everyone can help every day just by not throwing it out.  

“We can’t afford to have to pay to have all the trash picked up, so we need people just not to throw it out,” Johnson said. “That’s your tax dollars that are picking it up.” 

The spring clean up push continues on Saturday, May 4, when another Household Hazardous Waste Day and Waste Tire Recycle event is held at the Landers Center’s southeast parking lot.

The collection event is a community service, funded by the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality in cooperation with the DeSoto County Board of Supervisors. Hours are from 8 a.m.-12 noon.  

More information about that event is found here: