Chattanooga, Tennessee – Some call it an eyesore; others call it art. But the plain fact is that painting graffiti on public or private property is against the law. Graffiti is a nuisance and in some instances it contains dangerous or offensive messages. A new and innovative graffiti removal program called the “Chatt City Erasers,” will be made up of workers from the Summer Youth Program who will be responsible for painting over and cleaning up graffiti around the city. “By utilizing our summer youth workers, we are able to make a noticeable difference,” said Mayor Ron Littlefield. “Graffiti has become a serious problem for property owners, residents and visitors. It detracts from the beauty of our city and leaves a negative impression.”
The Summer Youth Program provides employment opportunities and activities for teens and young adults. Sponsored by the office of Faith-Based and Community Partnerships, the program encourages positive behavior through summer employment and mentoring.
The City of Chattanooga’s Public Works Department has already cleaned up graffiti on the North Shore and other areas. Initially, the graffiti clean-up program was to be limited to graffiti removal from public property but was expanded to include private property. Private property owners will be required to sign an agreement to indemnify and hold harmless before any work can be performed on the property.
Citizens are encouraged to call 311 (425-6311) and report graffiti or visit www.chattanooga.gov and click on the 311 logo. Graffiti is costly, destructive, against the law, and sends a message that the community is not concerned about the appearance of its neighborhoods.