NEW YORK — WHEN he was running for office, candidate Rudolph Giuliani focused on quality-of-life issues.
Now, Republican Mayor Giuliani is starting to attack some of the negative things that impact the city's perception of itself. On Saturday, his attention will be focused on litter and the city's image as the capital of grime.
City officials are expecting more than 10,000 Big Apple residents to sweep up newspapers, candy wrappers, cigarette butts, and anything else that their fellow residents routinely toss into the streets.
The cleanup is part of the mayor's efforts to involve the residents in improving the city's quality of life. ``The mayor feels very strongly that New Yorkers need to become responsible and proud of their city,'' says Shirley Jaffe, deputy chief of staff for Fran Reiter, a deputy mayor.
If the 10,000 volunteers show up, the cleanup effort would be the largest one-day Big Apple public-service campaign in decades. The city plans to shut down parts of two major highways to allow volunteers to clean along the roadway. They will also attack vacant lots, school grounds, and city parks in all five boroughs.
The effort is reflected in a clean streets and sidewalks ``scorecard'' maintained by the mayor's operations department. In September, 76 percent of the city streets were acceptably clean and 86 percent of its sidewalks.
The Saturday effort follows a more modest effort in the city on Sept. 17 by the Clean Up the World campaign, headquartered in Sydney, Australia.