The best way to stop illegal dumping is to prevent it from occurring. This requires providing adequate alternatives to dispose of waste, educating the community on the consequences and impacts and improving areas prone to dumping.
Improve access to neighborhood depositories
$50,400 to pilot a neighborhood drop-off program. In addition to offering residential curbside heavy trash services, SWMD operates six Neighborhood Depository Sites (NDS) throughout the City that accept bulky items and other recyclable materials free of charge for residents. In addition, the City will promote community cleanups with free landfill disposal in areas particularly impacted by dumping to bring waste disposal options even closer to those neighborhoods.
The steady growth of the city coupled with the increase in use of these NDS have created long waiting times and excessive delays for residents who utilize these facilities. Capital improvement projects to construct larger depositories are being considered to compliment the growth of neighborhoods and demand in use for these facilities. While these projects remain under consideration, provisions will be made to increase the operating hours and equipment required to facilitate increased disposal demands.
Establish a dumpsite maintenance and control program
Funding allocated on a project-by-project basis.SWMD is instituting processes and training staff to identify opportunities to maintain and control chronic dumpsites using proven strategies such as barricades, signage, and improved landscaping and lighting. Once a location has been identified and integrated into GIS technology to monitor, collect and record historical information on chronic illegal dumpsites, SWMD will provide recommendations to mitigate the activity.
Improve community engagement
No additional funding required. Community members can play an important role in helping the City address illegal dumping by improving awareness of local regulations, reporting violators to authorities, or aiding in community beautification efforts. All Houstonians must get involved to make the vision of One Clean Houston a reality. The City of Houston is engaging community groups through the Mayor’s Office of Complete Communities and other agencies to expand illegal dumping education and neighborhood cleanup efforts, particularly in areas severely impacted by dumping. SWMD, DON and local partners will assist in neighborhood beautification by organizing volunteers, tools and equipment, and other resources.