Illegal Dumping is a national epidemic, disturbing people in the urban neighborhoods and the inner cities. Waste sites attract and become a breeding ground for rodents and mosquitoes. Both creatures can carry and transmit harmful diseases to humans.
It is important cities implement a program to prevent the hazards and blight illegal dumping causes.
Effective programs implement an enforcement part of the program and some cities generate revenue to offset the cost of illegal dump site cleanups. For a city to be able to generate revenue, it must have strong legislation, communication and teamwork between city departments and tools to help the designated department get the job done.
Among many cities who have developed an illegal dumping program, California’s Department of Resources and Recovery (CalRecycle) has developed and provided a tool to help municipalities within California combat illegal dumping within their community. Within the Enforcement part of the guide, there are four needed strong actions:
- Staff Resources: Dedicated staff with training and authority to educate the public, respond and investigate illegal dumping complaints, which includes interviews and making arrests
- Tools and Resources: Resources are paramount to
helping the staff combat the illegal dumping problem, which should include:
- Data management systems to locate and map hot spots
- Hot lines to receive complaints about illegal dumping
- Illegal Dumping Cameras to catch or prevent perpetrators in the act of illegal dumping
- Administrative Actions: An effective illegal dumping program must have Orders, Fines and an Administrative Law Judge, to handle major cases
- Judicial Prosecution: Illegal dumping programs need to have the ability to use the judicial process to determine guilt and obtain abatement.
Without a strong illegal dumping program and tools to implement the program, cities will continue to face the blight and community panic illegal dumping causes.