2006-02-09 / Other News

EDITORIAL

The Garbage Chronicles

Every few months since last summer, the Canarsie Courier has been issued a summons from a Sanitation Department enforcement agent for lawful, yet questionable, violations. We have paid one, but have disputed two others and plan to do so with a fourth we received on Tuesday, February 7.

More often than not, the garbage in front of our office at 1142 East 92 Street is wind-blown from a property just south of our location. Sanitation agents explain they cannot issue summonses to businesses that are not open when they are on the scene.

Some trash in the street in front of our building, for which we are responsible up to 18 inches, is usually difficult to remove because of vehicles parked on it. It seems more logical— though probably not compatible with the Sanitation Department schedule — for agents to give our area the once-over on Wednesdays before 10 a.m. when alternate side of the street parking prohibits vehicles from the west side of E. 92 Street and is accessible for sweeping.

We have contacted the Department of Sanitation’s community affairs office several times in the wake of being ticketed, but have received no response to our queries.

As a conscientious community newspaper since 1921, the Courier is aware of its responsibility to properly maintain its property and keep it free of trash. However, when wind-blown garbage constantly ends up in front of the newspaper building, as a result of negligence by absent property owners, it seems unwarranted to fine the law-abiding, operational merchant.

We have no problem with Sanitation Department enforcing city regulations, nor do we expect any preference, but we can’t understand why inspectors are not directed to use common sense and good judgment when exercising their tasks.

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