The Northern Westchester Examiner

Yorktown Takes Unique Step to Crack Down on Dumping

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The Yorktown Town Board unanimously approved an amendment to the Town Code on June 21 that would make dumping from a vehicle a civil violation if the offender is caught in the act.

The addition to the town’s littering laws is unique, according to Town Attorney Michael McDermott, who said his research didn’t reveal any other municipality with legislation regarding utilizing cameras to capture an image of a car license plate and the operator of the vehicle illegally dumping trash.

“This is another example where Yorktown has not only been on the cutting edge, but is way out in front,” Yorktown Supervisor Michael Grace remarked. “We have been seeing this problem all over the place. We know we have chronic places and we’re hopeful once one or two people get nabbed the problem will get abated.”

Grace said the next step would be for the town to invest in technology “that will allow us to proactively and effectively enforce the litter law.”

McDermott said Yorktown was going to be tough on violators and mentioned he was working on a separate graffiti law.

“Once the first person is caught it is my intention to make that person sort of a scapegoat and say this person was caught as a result of the statute, and hopefully it will serve as a deterrent,” he said.

Several speakers supported the legislation and mentioned some of the areas in town where dumping has been a problem, including Indian Hill Road and French Hill Road.

Bob Buchanan said he caught someone dumping construction debris on Indian Hill Road and notified the police, but they didn’t show up. He said he often finds liquor bottles and needles discarded, along with deer carcasses.

“It’s really getting to be very pathetic,” he said.

Tony Grasso, a former councilman and current treasurer of the Yorktown Chamber of Commerce, applauded the board and McDermott for the amendment.

“We are being dumped on. We see it every day,” he said. “We have to start somewhere. This is a good start.”


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