GARY, WV – Monday’s new Litter Enforcement Initiative in Gary resulted in 13 new sites identified and two old locations receiving citations to Magistrate Court according to Gary Officials.
Gary Police Chief S. P. “Pat” McKinney and McDowell Solid Waste Authority Office Wendell Hatfield went street by street Monday looking for serious violations after a massive publicity campaign in newspapers and on three TV stations.
“We put the word out we were coming and Free Dump Day at the Copper Ridge Landfill should be utilized,” said McKinney. ”Then we went out and visited the sites on Monday. We found thirteen locations that needed attention. Twelve of those were given compliance notices and one commercial
dump is being reviewed to find the best action.”
In addition, two persons received citations for Unlawful Disposal of Litter and one was also cited for Improper Disposal of a Refrigerator.
“We had been to those two locations previously and no action was taken,” McKinney said. ”One of those had a refrigerator with the doors still on it which is a death trap for a curious child.”
McKinney said the effort will be time consuming but hopefully bring results.
“It is a process. Step One: Tell the property owner there is a problem and ask them to make an effort to clean up. If they do we work with them until the site is clean. Step Two is a citation to Magistrate Court with a thousand dollar penalty and possible jail time for those who don’t make an effort. If the citation inspires a cleanup, we withdraw the citation. If not we go to Step Three which is an arrest that may require a cash bond or the possibility of home confinement until the site is cleaned up. That is the worst case scenario for the person who simply refuses.”
McKinney said he doesn’t want to write tickets or make arrests in the matter.
“The goal is clean the town up. If they pay five tickets a week but don’t remove the trash, we didn’t achieve our goal. As long as there is a sincere effort, we will work with property owners to get the properties clear.”
McKinney and Hatfield will revisit the sites the first week of July after the next Free Dump Day June 26.