Keep Bossier Beautiful Quarterly Report

Posted: Jul 2, 2020, 4:38 PM

The following is a quarterly report from Lynn Bryan, Executive Director of Keep Bossier Beautiful.

While Covid-19 had us sheltering in place we were busy preparing for the future.  We initiated board meetings via Zoom and will continue to utilize Zoom as an option for Board members to participate in meetings after the pandemic.

On April 1, we submitted a Healthy Community Grant to Keep Louisiana Beautiful. The purpose of the grant is to educate and raise awareness of the hazards from cigarette butt litter.  This grant includes pre and post cleanups in areas of Lamar Advertising, digital billboards where the KLB marketing image “Keep your butts in your pants” will be displayed. Awardees of this grant will be announced no later than August 1st.

On April 9, we submitted a similar grant to Keep America Beautiful to continue the work to educate and raise awareness of the hazards from cigarette butt litter.  It included a partnership with Lamar Advertising and Townsquare Media.  Placement of commercial size ash receptacles at our local government plaza and other high traffic location was part of the plan.  On June 24, we received notice that we were not selected for funding.

At KBB we definitely have a new appreciation for the Gateway maintenance performed by inmates under the supervision of Bossier Sheriff’s Department.  The five Gateways were mowed, trimmed, trees pruned, flowers planted and weeds pulled by our Board members while inmates are in protective quarters from coronavirus.  Volunteers donated 66 hours to keep our Gateways looking nice.

We finalized our Annual Community Appearance Index which will be the foundation for future litter indexes.  Data from this report will guide our cleanup efforts over the next year.

Representatives from KBB met and reviewed insurance coverage with State Farm agent, Larry Poole.  We also met with CPA, Barry Barton who agreed to advise us on financial procedures and submit IRS Tax Forms annually.  

On May 5, KBB participated in the Community Foundation of North Louisiana, Give for Good event.  We were very fortunate to raise $1321 which will go toward earth day activities.  Additional donations totaling $1500 were received this quarter that will go toward the general budget. 

Work began to create an Operational Manual and started with a revision of our bylaws.  A governance committee was formed and we reviewed bylaws from other Keep America Beautiful affiliates and researched best practices to create a document that will guide our work. 

Our original charter filed on December 26, 1985 served as the foundation of our revisions.  Various procedures noted in our current bylaws, which are not on file at the Secretary of State or at the Clerk of Court office, were incorporated into the 2020 Revision. 

The Governance committee met with leaders from our state affiliate at Keep Louisiana Beautiful who provided guidance.  The Board members of KBB have reviewed and discussed the revisions.  The final draft is with Keep Louisiana Beautiful leaders and will be forwarded for a legal review before the final vote and filing are performed. 

Additionally, job descriptions for Board members and an Annual Commitment Letter were created, approved and signed by Board members.  The Annual Commitment Letter requires Board members to agree to the Conflict of Interest, Code of Ethics and Whistleblower Policy of Keep Bossier Beautiful.  Other procedures and job descriptions have been created and are in draft form.    

I visited Ouachita Green and they shared procedures for activities and events. I have encouraged Board members to attend a couple of the upcoming events in West Monroe as they could be reproduced in Bossier.

KBB hosted two cleanups and another is on the schedule for July.  Following the new Keep America Beautiful guidelines, all supplies are thoroughly cleaned after each event and we are now using disposable gloves.  Participants are asked to wear masks, practice social distancing and are required to sign that they do not have symptoms, nor been exposed to anyone who has tested positive for Covid-19.

Plans are in the works to reschedule the Great American Cleanup for late September or early October for Bossier Parish residents.  We are also working on a fund raiser to sell personalized bricks at Liberty Garden in preparation for the 20th Anniversary of 9/11.