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City of Harrisburg to bring back 'Hot Spot Saturdays' to target illegal dumping

The city spent approximately $120,000 cleaning up illegally dumped items in 2022.

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Furniture, TVs, building materials, and more. They are just some of the things that continue to be illegally dumped across Harrisburg.

“We definitely are on attack when it comes to illegal dumping and blight," said Dave West, the city's public works director.

Beyond creating a lot of eye sores, illegal dumping is costing taxpayers a pretty penny.

In 2022, the city spent nearly $120,000 cleaning up, and West says it’s hard for his team to keep up with it.

“There’s more [culprits] than us and we can’t catch them all because there are so many other things we’re doing in the city," he explained.

In the last few months, the city has placed cameras in certain areas to try to deter people from dumping their junk in vacant lots.

“Some sites are one-time spots," West said. "There are other sites where they routinely dump and those are the places they’re setting the cameras.”

On Wednesday, West said the public works department has been able to identify several individuals illegally dumping things in the city through video surveillance.

He said those individuals were turned over to the police but did not know if any of them had been formally cited.

In an effort to help clean up some of the biggest problem spots, the city is bringing back "Hot Spot Saturdays" for the second straight summer.

Last year, over ten tons of trash was cleaned up as part of this initiative, according to Harrisburg City Councilman, Ralph Rodriguez, who started the program.

In partnership with the city council, public works will target five different neighborhoods over the next few months.

They need volunteers to help with the cleanup.

“It starts with you, the residents, to help us keep our city clean because as well as it’s our city, it’s your city first," said West.

The Hot Spot Saturday dates and locations are as follows:

  • June 17 - Camp Curtain area Uptown
  • July 22 - Southside Cloverly Area
  • August 12 - Allison Hill
  • September 16 - Midtown
  • October 7 - Southside 13th

The following maps show where trash containers will be placed during each clean-up:

Credit: City of Harrisburg
Credit: City of Harrisburg
Credit: City of Harrisburg
Credit: City of Harrisburg
Credit: City of Harrisburg

Anyone interested in volunteering during Hot Spot Saturdays can email rrodriguez@harrisburgpa.gov.

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