American States' overall public spaces quality from indicator score totals. BEST States include Washington, Florida, Iowa and Connecticut. WORST include South Carolina, Nevada, Indiana and Wyoming.
South Carolina ranked bottom-worst, while Washington lead state governments, and since 2011, for the second consecutive time, in widespread quality of public-property cleanliness, as revealed by the 2014 American State Litter Scorecard, presented at the American Society for Public Administration Conference in the District of Columbia in late March.
Littering, the illegal human disposing of man-made items onto public property, breeds diseases and insects. Each year, over 800 Americans are killed in debris-litter attributed vehicle accidents, consistently due to poor, untimely roadway maintenance by officials and contractors, said Steve Spacek, Scorecard author.
States were ranked for overall environmental quality from totaled indicator score that approximate current public spaces cleanliness conditions. Indicators included the existence of behavior-controlling slogans, recycling and beverage deposits legislation, stewardship of thoroughfares, percentages of "profiled litterers" ages 16-25, and corruption risk of state government public service activities. The Scorecard tallied the fifty states objectively, using scientific data, and subjectively, using prior peer appraisals, to arrive at a final score.
Rounding out the topmost clean, or BEST, states are Washington, California, Connecticut, Florida, Maine, Oregon, Vermont, Iowa, Maryland and Missouri . Bringing up the lower end of the rankings scale is South Carolina, in last place, rated dirtiest of WORST states, preceded by Nevada, Indiana, Georgia, Kentucky, Wyoming, South Dakota, Louisiana, Michigan, New Mexico and Oklahoma.
Instead of previously domiminating the Deep South, most WORST states for 2014 are located west of the Mississippi River, with three in the east central Midwest and two in the Southeast. Cleanest, BEST states still tend to be located in the Far West, New England or the western Midwest, as they did in the 2008 and 2011 Scorecards, said Spacek.