TEPA Crackdown on Illegal Dump Sites
By KRISTAN KORNS, Two Rivers Tribune
Shortly after removing more than 22,000 pounds of garbage during a two-month cleanup of illegal dump sites in and around Hoopa, Tribal Environmental Protection Agency (TEPA) crews discovered new dump sites.
Water Quality Specialist Amos Pole and Compliance Officer Robert Buckman pulled on their gloves when they discovered one of the illegal sites a half-mile up Bair Road.
“We’re getting proactive about tracking down who’s responsible for these dump sites,” Pole said. “If we find names, we’re going to go after them.”
The two TEPA employees searched through the garbage, and within 15 minutes they were looking at a dozen or more bills, letters, and other items all addressed to members of one family.
Buckman said, “We’ve got everything we need here.”
The two TEPA employees asked the TRT to hold off on releasing the name of the family, which – according to their mail strewn across Bair Road – has members living in both Hoopa and Willow Creek.
“They should be officially contacted first,” Buckman said.
TEPA hopes to work with the TRT in the future to start publishing the names of illegal dumpers.
It takes a lot of time, effort, and expense to clean up the tons of garbage randomly dumped in the area. TEPA plans to send bills to illegal dumpers to cover the costs of clean up.
“If you have more than two of the same name on mail in the garbage, you can take them to court,” Buckman said.