Keep America Beautiful presented the City of Plano with its President’s Circle Award recognition at the recent Keep America Beautiful National Conference, which took place in Washington, D.C. The President’s Circle Award recognizes exemplary performance by certified affiliates of the national nonprofit in creating clean, green and beautiful communities.
In qualifying for a President’s Circle Award, the City of Plano has met Keep America Beautiful’s standards of merit by conducting an annual Community Appearance Index, calculating the affiliate’s cost/benefit ratio, and administering activities in the areas of Ending Littering, Improving Recycling, and Beautifying Plano’s Community. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful consists of a national network of more than 620 community-based affiliates whose programs, initiatives and efforts, supported by millions of volunteers, help transform public spaces into beautiful places.
“One of Keep America Beautiful’s most effective tools is the work of our grassroots network of affiliate organizations, which has an impact on millions of Americans each year,” said Keep America Beautiful COO Becky Lyons. “Our affiliates are providing real solutions that help create communities that are socially connected, environmentally healthy and economically sound.”
Community Appearance Index-Litter Index: The Keep America Beautiful Community Appearance Index-Litter Index is a tool used by its affiliates to visually assess overall appearance of communities through indicators such as litter, illegal signs, graffiti, abandoned or junk vehicles, and outside storage. A team of community, business and government representatives conduct the visual analysis using a scoring system ranging from 1-4, with “1” rated as “no litter” to “4” being “extremely littered.” Each year, affiliates grade their communities during a drive-by examination of the same areas at the same time of the year. This provides an indication of the success of each community’s anti-littering education and other anti-littering programs.
Cost/Benefit Analysis: This measurement tool enables Keep America Beautiful affiliates to demonstrate their ability to leverage community resources by determining the dollar value returned to the community for every dollar invested by government.
The Keep America Beautiful National Conference, its premier educational and networking event, brought together more than 350 leaders from Keep America Beautiful’s national network of affiliates, business leaders, policymakers and other experts who shared innovative ideas and proven strategies to help End Littering, Improve Recycling, and Beautify America’s Communities.
Photo: Sunrise in Downtown Plano by Ronnie Blea of RB-2 Photography.