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Neighbors want trash dumped illegally in north Tulsa cleaned up

Trash dumping near a north Tulsa business
Trash dumping near a north Tulsa business
No Dumping sign
Posted at 2:07 PM, Apr 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-05 12:04:17-04

TULSA, Okla. — Frustrated neighbors fed up with heaps of trash near a North Tulsa business called the 2 Works for You Problem Solvers when their calls to 311 didn’t get the mess cleaned up.

It turns out, those calls were going to the wrong place. The trash is on the property of the Family Dollar Store on North Peoria Avenue just outside the Tulsa City limit.

But this doesn’t mean the mess won’t get cleaned up. It is within the jurisdiction of the Tulsa City-County Health Department which also got several complaints according to Adam Austin, THD’s Division Chief for Environmental Health.

Austin told KJRH, "For about the last year or so we have had some on and off again issues with illegal dumping going on at the Family Dollar near 56th Street North and Peoria."

Austin added, illegal dumping is a health risk because it can attract mice, rats and provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes, so trash needs to be cleaned up.

THD sent a notice of violation to the owner of the property and posted that order on the property itself requiring clean up on March 16, 2021. Its notice is not far from the store’s own notice forbidding dumping on its property.

THD’s notice gave the store ten business days to get rid of the trash,when that didn’t happen, THD sent out an inspector.

“The inspector went back out to the property and situation had probably actually gotten a little worse," Austin said. He added because the mess was still there, “We hand-delivered a warning citation to the manager on duty."

The Problem Solvers reached out to Family Dollar’s Corporate Office about the mess and warning citation.

Kayleigh Painter, Manager, Investor and Media Relations sent back this statement: “We strive to be a good community partner and we are committed to promptly resolving instances of illegal public dumping when they occur at our store properties. We are aware of the recent report and are committed to ensuring our store adheres to all local regulations and Company standards. Our store team and their business partners have a heightened sense of urgency and are in the process of addressing the issue. Additionally, we have implemented action steps with field leadership to ensure continuity of trash monitoring throughout the day and timely reports of illegal public dumping to local Waste Management.”

Austin told KJRH illegal dumping often happens on vacant land instead of a store site like this case.

He recommends when you see trash to report it to 311 if you live within the Tulsa City limits to get it cleaned up. If you live in Tulsa County, you can report it to the Tulsa City-County Health Department.

Getting the report to the right entity helps speed up the process of notifying property owners to clean things up. If the property owner can’t be found, or won’t clean things up, THD can hire a contractor to do it and then place a lien against the property to get reimbursed for the cost of the work.

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