Illinois hunting and fishing

Photo courtesy of M. Jayn Bigler.

Fly dumpers get to clean up their own mess

March 22, 2011 at 07:58 AM

Two fly-dumpers will have to clean up their own mess at the Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge in southern Illinois.

Dumping has become an increasing problem at the refuge, as people dump trash in an effort to avoid paying for proper disposal.

Since those cases were discovered, other dumpsites have appeared on public land.

The fly-dumpers that were caught were identified after law enforcement was able to trace the trash.

“We’ve got locations all over the refuge where historically folks have just felt enough convenience to become complacent enough to come out here and toss their stuff and just get rid of it and wipe their hands clean of it,” said Geoff Donaldson, law enforcement officer at Cypress Creek. “It’s easy for them to do that because it’s not their property and it’s easy just to drive it down the road and step out of the truck and grab the household garbage, tires or whatever it might be, back it up into the refuge and pitch it and let it go.

“Somebody else is going to clean it up in their minds.”

One of the dumpers was a juvenile who was not charged.

The juvenile and his father agreed to perform community service on the refuge.

The other violator was fined $525 and ordered to perform community service.

In these cases, community service includes cleaning up the trash dumped.

Fines for dumping trash on a national forest, for example, can be as high as $5,000 and come with six months in jail.