EL CENTRO – In an effort to minimize health and safety hazards arising from illegal dumping, the Imperial County Board of Supervisors established an enforcement process during Tuesday’s board meeting.
Illegal dumping is any unauthorized disposal of waste on any public or private property. Usually, people dump illegally to avoid collection and disposal fees, or because they believe proper disposal is just “too much trouble,” according to the county.
The purpose of the ordinance is to reduce the unlawful disposal of solid waste at unauthorized locations within Imperial County; minimize health and safety hazards as a result of illegal dumping; reduce the financial hardship incurred by property owners tasked with the removal and proper disposal of illegally disposed solid waste on their property; and, reduce public nuisances from accumulated wastes on private properties and businesses.
“There current state law does not allow fining people who dump illegally in other people’s homes or businesses” said Jeff Lamoure R.E.H.S., Deputy Director for Environmental Health Services.
The ordinance will improve the ability to identify the responsible party by designating the Health Officer, or qualified designee, as enforcement officers. The enforcement officers will be able to issue notices of violations, administrative citations, and cease and desist orders for illegally dumping waste.
“I like the idea, lessoning the burden on property owners who have been specifically affected by illegal dumping” said Michael Kelley, D-3 Board of Supervisors.
This will also provide for an administrative enforcement process that will include requiring the responsible party to clean-up the illegally dumped waste.
“This is a positive step in the right direction” said Michael Kemp, IID, assistant supervisor of regulatory compliance and emergency planning.
The ordinance will benefit the residents, reduce illegal dumping, and promote and protect the health, safety and welfare of all residents of the county.