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Illegal Dumping Causing Stinky Situation

PLAINS TOWNSHIP-- Public workers are at their wits end over illegal dumping on the stretch of South Main Street connecting Wilkes-Barre to Plains Township known as the "Oakies" section.

Officials said they have tried everything from security cameras to hefty fines, but the dumping doesn't stop.

Department of Public Works Employees spend about half a day once a week cleaning up the illegally dumped trash.

"Anything from grass clippings, to household garbage, to couches, mattresses, you name it. It's here," Assistant Director for the DPW Jeff Gustinucci said.

However, workers said picking up the trash is not the worst part of this stinky situation, it's the fact that dumpers are not even from Plains Township.

"The addresses and the names that we do find they are not from Plains. It hurts even more. People are coming to our town and dumping illegal trash," Gustinucci said.

Workers have tried to track down the illegal dumpers by going through the trash, or to catch them in the act, they set up five security cameras. However, three of the five cameras were stolen.

"People who obviously saw the cameras either climbed the tree or found a way to get them. They're gone," Gustinucci said.

To warn people to stop dumping trash, officials even put up signs reading there is a $1,000 fine for the dirty deed. However, one of those signs was stolen.

Commissioners said one of the only solutions to this problem is to find someone to develop the area.

"There's no lighting down here, it's a main thoroughfare between Wilkes Barre and Plains. If we ever had lighting or development that would be the main answer for this whole section of town," Plains Township Commissioner Robert Sax said.

In the meantime, workers just hope people start to understand that one person's trash is not always another person's treasure.

"People take pride in Plains Township. The commissioner's board takes pride in Plains Township. This is just really, really unnecessary," Gustinucci said.

If you see someone illegally dumping here, or anywhere, you can call police.

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