Thursday, July 10, 2008

Local Residents Busted for Illegal Dumping

Sanitation Reports Ridgewood, Middle Village Violators

By Conor Greene

Nine vehicles used to illegally dump garbage have been seized from owners around the city, including from a Middle Village man and two Ridgewood residents, announced the Department of Sanitation.

Throughout June, the department’s Citywide Illegal Dumping Task Force seized and impounded nine vehicles allegedly used to illegally dump items at sites in Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island. The task force, comprised of plainclothes Sanitation Police Officers, monitors known dumping site across the city and seizes vehicles of owners caught in the act.

“Illegal dumping is against the law,” said Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty. “If you do it, you will get caught. The Illegal Dumping Task Force is the city’s front line defense against illegal dumpers who shamefully use our streets and lots as their personal dumping grounds.”

The June impoundments included three vehicles seized in connection with dumping at locations Queens, including Maspeth, along with five in Brooklyn and one on Staten Island. In addition, George Strang, of 66th Drive in Middle Village, was caught using his 1998 Peterbilt dump truck to leave approximately 15 cubic yards of dirt and rocks on an Ingram Street lot.

The first incident of illegal dumping in Queens last month came on June 3, when a Washington state man was seen dumping five cubic yards of trash from a 2003 GMC truck in front of 131-02 40th Road in Flushing. On the 19th, three individuals –from Jamaica, Hollis and Mt. Vernon – were seen dumping three cubic yards of trash from a 1996 Ford Econoline at 95-10 Tuckerton Street in Jamaica.

The following day, Michal Mosur of 66th Place and Patryk Laszckowski of 68th Road, both in Ridgewood, were caught dumping one cubic yard of stones at 54th Road and Laurel Hill Boulevard in Maspeth.

The Department of Sanitation has two programs that include public participation in stopping illegal dumping. Under the Illegal Dumping Award Program, a person who sees illegal dumping and completes and affidavit leading to the conviction of the violator is eligible to receive up to 50% of the fine collected by the city. The individual must appear at a hearing if the accused appears before the Environmental Control Board to challenge the summons.

Under the Illegal Dumping Tip Program, residents can remain anonymous, but must provide information that helps the department catch the dumper red-handed. The tipster’s identity remains confidential, and they don’t have to appear at a hearing, but are only compensated if the department subsequently catches the person.

The city urges residents to follow these guidelines if they observe somebody illegally dumping materials on a sidewalk, street or property:

Observe the vehicle
•Do not make your presence known;
•Do not touch the discarded material
•Report the vehicles, not the individuals.

Record vital information
•License plate number
•Vehicle description
•Nature and quantity of material dumped
•Time, date and location of occurrence

File a citizen complaint with the Sanitation Police. Check or call 311 for details on these programs.