Illegal dumpers use dirty tactics, the law responds


Hidden cameras are catching far more illegal dumpers, but offenders steal or vandalize the $150 cameras.

City officials reported the situation Monday to the mayor and city manager.

Still, the cameras work and helped raise more than $46,000 in dumping fines last year and this year.

City inspectors did almost 140 investigations last year and are on pace to do more this year, compared to just 40 investigations in 2011.

The city currently has 25 cameras on watch and nine more are to be installed to replace 10 stolen or vandalized so far this year.

Mayor Sly James said, “It seems to me we’re fighting a fool’s errand here – we buy 15 and they steal 10.”

There must be some attempt to catch the camera stealers, he said.

Cameras to watch the cameras?

City Manager Troy Schulte said neighborhood groups have suggested a version of that: Put up 25 cheap dummy cameras monitored by real cameras.



  1. Mark says:

    I don’t see the problem. $46,000 buys 306 cameras at $150 each. Obviously, the fines can’t go only to buying cameras, but that’s a lot of cameras.

  2. Jewell says:

    Well, the issue here would be spending more money, period. We can’t be in the business of absorbing the continuing costs of replacing cameras. Illegal dumpers, just like people who litter our streets & neighborhoods, just don’t care. For them, cleaning up is someone else’s problem. And these are adults we’re talking about 90% of the time. They ought to know better. Hey, even squirrels know enough to clean their own nests! If these people who don’t care, have no civic pride, and think cleaning up is someone else’s problem, then provide them with consequences which cause them to think twice before they continue littering/dumping. It’s been done elsewhere in the world -fine them & heavily. Break them of their bad habits. There is no excuse for littering or dumping. None whatsoever.

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