Council Bluffs officials say spring cleaning is leading to an increase in illegal dumping, as people are pitching all sorts of items into the big blue recycling containers outside grocery stores. Tony Siala, the city’s solid waste management supervisor, says it’s shameful what some people toss into those bins.
Siala says they’re finding old tires, TVs and animal carcasses, even dead puppies were discovered stuffed inside a coffee can in a recycling bin. The bins are supposed to be for recyclables only — in separate areas for paper, metal and glass. He says this type of illegal dumping makes the job of the people who work with recyclable items very hazardous.
"We have people, all day long, sorting through these materials and they’re encountering this," Siala says. "There are health and safety issues that can be of concern with this." He is appealing to everyone to help in stopping the lawbreakers. Siala asks the general public to be aware of this activity, to pay attention and if they see it going on, get a vehicle description and a license plate number.
He says residents know the laws and right from wrong. "People are well aware of what the regulations are as far as illegal dumping," Siala says. "I think it’s more of a case of just lazy or not wanting to take care of it properly on their own." The containers are now being closely monitored and anyone caught illegally dumping could face a fine of up to 800-dollars.