Littering Law

Section 13a-7-29 of Alabama Code - Littering Regulations

This memorandum is to summarize our current practices of collecting the litter along the roadways. The crews should collect the signage that is attached to the utility poles, traffic signs, trees, and ground on the rights of way within the county. Field personnel should record the information onto the litter log from the signage and or from the debris / litter discovered. 

Environmental office personnel will be utilizing the data on the form to notify the various parties. In the future, this information may be utilized during enforcement actions. If ground based litter/garbage contains a bank statement, bank card bills, utility bills, or other documents that clearly documents a person’s name, the document should be placed within an envelope and routed with your weekly litter logs. 

The signs and the litter / trash collected should be transported to the applicable county dumpster and or directly to the landfill. I do not want anyone on a ladder attempting to remove a sign. All removal activities should be ground based and when needed, you can use a short rod scraper. Do not work close to any electrical, telephone, or cable utility services! Practice good safety; do not concern yourself with articles that are not safely accessed from the ground and clear from utility services! It is important to pick up all debris because as the grass grows we could lose sight of the wire and wooden stakes that may be struck by the mowers. 

Signage Requirements & Restrictions

BellSouth and Alabama Power advised that they have not granted permission to affix signage to the utility poles. Alabama Power will be provided notice of any signage that was not accessible from the ground. They plan to address these signs with their own personnel. 

Shelby County has not granted permission to attach signage to traffic signs. The following signage should not be removed unless obstructing a sight line for those using or entering the public highways or violates "safety concerns" or it prevents mowing activities and the mowing activities are eminent: 

  • Temporary signage that is announcing a community event or public registration announcements unless the known or printed date has passed
  • A sign on the right of way announcing that the house or property is for sale when the signage is on or adjacent to the subject property
  • Signage advertising the business activity associated with or occurring on the property where the sign is affixed

When in question about a sign, leave it alone and make a note about it on the litter log. The specific sign/site will be reviewed on a monthly basis by the appropriate department. You'll be advised if additional actions are applicable. 

Safety Tips

Remember to wear appropriate gloves when collecting the litter. Thoroughly remove and pick up the attachment devices and litter from the ground. We want to keep our county clear of debris and remove the mowing safety hazards. The completed litter logs must be returned to the Environmental Office. Thank you for your attention to this matter.