L.A. Councilman takes aim at illegal dumping in DTLA

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The Los Angeles City Council could take a stand later this week against one of Downtown Los Angeles’ most persistent problems: Illegally dumped trash.

Councilman Jose Huizar introduced legislation last week calling for more crews to clean-up waste and trash across DTLA.

“I have long said that Downtown Los Angeles needs an emergency, triage-like response when it comes to addressing homelessness, but that is also true for the amount of trash that is illegally dumped on our streets,” Huizar said. “It is deplorable and a health and safety issue that should not be allowed to occur in the second-largest city in the nation.”

Huizar also said cleaning crews could be manned by homeless and formerly homeless individuals through the non-profit Chrysalis. Huizar’s motion also calls for increased enforcement, fines and rewards to target violators.

It’s not the first time the City Council has addressed DTLA’s dumping issues.

In late 2017, Councilmembers Huizar, Curren Price and Mitch O’Farrell issued a motion calling for additional city crews to deal with service requests for cleanups and in 2018, the City Council doubled the number of crews dedicated to homeless encampments.

Today, there are 20 crews that operate as either “Clean Streets LA” or “HOPE” teams, primarily focused on addressing sanitation and other concerns related to homeless encampments.

Los Angeles Sanitation has responded to an average of 1,200 illegal dumping requests per month this year alone. That may seem like an aggressive anti-dumping campaign, it pales in comparison to the ongoing backlog of clean-up requests received by the department.

“We must do better, and it must consist of improved cleanup practices, along with enforcement against those businesses and others who blatantly pollute our streets,” Huizar said.

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