Illegal dumping (depositing material on public or private property without the consent of the owner) is the most common environmental crime, and leads to significant degradation of the area if left unchecked. It has a negative economic impact on the community and has been linked to a rise in other types of crime through the "Broken Windows" theory.
Through several programs, including education, enforcement and abatement, the city can clean up this problem and help prevent it from returning to your area.
- Keep an eye on any vulnerable areas, such as dead-end streets, vacant lots and abandoned buildings.
- If necessary, a location that is repeatedly hit can have barriers put in place by Public Works to discourage dumping.
- Creating activity in such areas, such as installing a 'pocket park' on a vacant lot, can also help discourage criminal activity of all types.
- Contact the Police Department and make sure they are aware of vulnerable areas or spots that are regularly dumped on.
- Illegal Dumping inspectors can also investigate the trash to look for identifying material, or set up cameras to track and prosecute dumpers. To request their services, contact the 3-1-1 Call Center.
- Organizing a Block Watch club for your area can be one of the most effective ways to stop a dumping problem - once they know people are watching and reporting, dumpers will often move on!
- Not all dumping comes from 'outside' the neighborhood, though. Make sure you and your neighbors know what to do with various kinds of Solid Waste:
- Cleaning up illegal dumping is a good way to prevent more from accumulating on top of the original mess. Report the dump site to the 3-1-1 Call Center and the city will work to get it cleaned.