BOCA RATON, Fla. - 17-year old Hayley Crowell is learning first hand how budget cuts can hurt.
Palm Beach County can't afford to clean its beaches as well as it used to. Now trash gets trapped in the seaweed at places like South Inlet Park more often. It encouraged Hayley to pick up her video camera.
"I just went walking looking for trash and it would be tangled in the seaweed or washed up on shore," she saidl.
The video (see below or bitly link: http://bit.ly/IVEG9b) shows what Hayley found just within the last month.
"All sorts of disgusting things that do not belong on the beach, some stuff gets buried in the sand and washed out to shore," says Hayley.
Palm Beach County stopped raking its beaches in 2010 to save money. Officials say if trash piles up in the seaweed in a hazardous manner, beaches will be raked on an "as needed" basis.
"Lots of times with tidal flushing what's there today is gone tomorrow, we have to play it by ear," says Eric Call, with the Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation Department.
County crews pick up trash on the beach three times a week, but they aren't instructed to go digging through the seaweed. Residents say those efforts aren't enough.
"I see guys out here a few times a week picking up trash but if you walk down there now, they missed a lot, it's pathetic," says Fred Fitzsimmons, who lives next to South Inlet Park.
We showed Hayley's video to Call, he says the litter that you see really doesn't stay on our breaches for long. With the current budget situation, he says county beaches won't be regularly raked again any time soon.