2003-11-27 / Other News

Sanit Dept. Still On The Lookout For Illegal Dumpers

By Charles Rogers
Sanit Dept. Still On The Lookout For Illegal Dumpers

Sanit Dept. Still On The Lookout For Illegal Dumpers

By Charles Rogers

From the depths of the numbered streets of Canarsie to the shadows of the now-defunct Fountain Avenue Landfill, some people will find a corner in which to illegally dump materials.

And the Department of Sanitation enforcement agents will catch ‘em and arrest ‘em for doing so!

Last week the Sanit Department re-leased a list of allegedly illegal dumpers — and the spots they chose to dump in, or on, during October.

According to Sanitation Commis-sioner John Doherty, the Citywide Illegal Dumping Task Force – his agents designated to catch the dumpers — seized and impounded 34 vehicles that were involved in incidents of illegal dumping and arrested the alleged dumpers.

Locally, Thomas Baptiste of Queens was caught allegedly dump-ing two cubic yards of construction debris at the corner of East 108 Street and Avenue D. His 1985 grey Chevy pickup was impounded.

Luis Caceres of Brentwood, N.Y. allegedly dumped a cubic yard of construction debris at Seaview and Foun-tain Avenues. Agents took his 1992 green Mazda van.

Joel Pickens, who lives on East 45 Street in East Flatbush, was caught allegedly dumping two cubic yards of broken furniture at the dead end of East 93rd Street in Canarsie. For that, enforcement agents took his 1990 black Chevy van.

A Canarsien was allegedly involved too when agents picked up Brady Garfield of Paerdegat 13 after he al-legedly dumped some construction debris on Fulton Street near Classon Avenue on October 22nd. He had to give up his 1988 red Dodge van.

The impoundments included 12 in Brooklyn, 11 in the Bronx, 10 in Queens, and one on Staten Island. When the Department catches an illegal dumper, Sanitation Police Officers can make arrests, if warranted, and impound the vehicles used in the illegal dumping incidents. The owner of the vehicle is subject to severe fines and will be held responsible for the actions of the operator of the vehicle regardless of being present during the act. Currently, fines start at $1,500 and range as high as $20,000 per summons. In addition, the illegal dumper must pay the city a cleanup cost for the illegally dumped material, generally about $150 per cubic yard.

"Illegal dumping is against the law," Doherty said," 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."

One of the critical resources in combating illegal dumping is the Illegal Dumper Tips Program, which was es-tablished to help get residents involved without placing them at risk from the dumpers. The program’s goal is to reduce and deter illegal dumping in neighborhoods citywide. If an individual provides information leading to the conviction or a fine for illegal dumping, they may receive a bounty of up to half the fine imposed. For more information on the program, residents should call the NYC Citizens Service Center at 311 or visit the DSNY web site at www.nyc.gov/sanitation.

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