ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (Fort Wayne's NBC) - Officials with Allen County's Department of Environmental Management say surveillance is being increased and violators run the risk of being slapped with stiff fines in connection with illegal dumping at a recycling drop-off location in the northwest part of the county.
The site is one of a half dozen such locations in the county that takes in glass, plastics, cardboard and other materials deemed acceptable to be collected in trailers set up on the property.
But too often, officials say, items are discarded on the parking lot outside the trailers, turning the area into a dumping ground for a whole host of things that have no business being left there.
All of the recycling sites are open and staffed by an attendant from 8 am to 4:30 pm Tuesday through Saturday.
Tom Fox, the director of Allen County's Department of Environmental Management, says routinely at the Carroll Road location a staff person shows up on Tuesday morning to find mounds of material all over the parking lot.
On occasion, electronics, appliances, furniture and all kinds of trash are left in piles.
County officials put a message out on Facebook, telling the public to stop disobeying rules listed on the side of the collection trailers.
"The dumping is illegal. It is punishable. There are fines. We're working with the sheriff's department to enforce this, so if people are caught doing the dumping, they are subject to penalties," Fox said.
Violators who are caught illegally discarding items at any of the county recycling drop off sites could be tagged with fines up to $2,500 per incident.
County officials say illegal dumping at the Carroll Road site needs to stop, or they will consider shutting down the location.
Fox believes one of the reasons the dumping problem has intensified is that the old Byron Health Center complex nearby closed a few months back, possibly emboldening people to dump items on the property, thinking nobody is watching closely.