MADISON COUNTY, Ill. – Major trash troubles in Madison County, Illinois, are linked to big trucks going up and down the highway. However, officials hope to follow in St. Charles County’s footsteps to get a handle on the trash trouble.

The numerous trash and garbage trucks that pass through Madison County each day on their way to the landfill are the main cause of the problem.

“Over a hundred trucks a day that come over from Missouri that transport trash from Missouri transit locations to the Roxana landfill,” said Kurt Prenzler, board chairman for Madison County. “Sometimes the tarps are not placed properly, and sometimes trash falls out from those trucks, it’s not intended.”

Prenzler said IDOT does what it can, but it’s time for some new ideas.

“Well, we looked over the river and what MoDot does. MoDot hires an independent contractor, and that’s something that IDOT doesn’t do,” he said. “IDOT has their own crews pick up litter; this is an idea that we’re going to be proposing. Perhaps we can be paying for some supplemental pickups.”

Prenzler said the idea of paying for extra trash pickups came from St. Charles County. St. Charles paid MoDot $34,000 for two extra pickups at times when the trash is really bad.

“When people come to the airport, and they fly into St. Louis, and they get on the highway, and they drive someplace, it’s the first impression they get of our region,” said Steve Ehmann, St. Charles County Executive. “If it’s a nice clean highway, grass cut, they see prosperity they drive through, they think good things. They drive through, they see litter and blighted homes, that’s not so good.”

Ehlmann said keeping county roads clean is a big priority.

“I think most of the people who vote care about it, and that makes me care about it,” he said.

Now Prenzler is joining that bandwagon.

“I think that would be a great approach because clean is good, but cleaner is better,” he said. “That’s what we want here in the county. I would say we could get that done for less than $100,000 in a year.”