Illegal dumping Task Force looks to educate public


April 11th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Illegal Dumping Task Force wants to educate the public about their options when it comes to disposing of trash. Cass County Landfill Operations Manager Wendy Wittrock said at Wednesday’s Board of Supervisor’s meeting, that the county doesn’t have a large problem with illegal dumping, but a resident who lives on Great River Road, north of Atlantic (who did not want to be identified by the media), showed pictures as evidence the act is still going on in the County. The pictures were taken near Great River Road and 635th Street. He presented 20 pictures of dumping that have taken place over the past couple of weeks. The trash included tires with steel rims, furniture and basic garbage. He says the person or persons who are dumping the trash may think they’re saving money by not taking it to the landfill, but the taxpayers end-up footing the bill, since the County crews have to pick up the trash and take it to the landfill and pay for its disposal. If the person who’s dumping that trash lives in Cass County, he says they’ll still end up paying for it, as a taxpayer.

Cass County Sheriff Darby McLaren said Chief Deputy John Westering has investigated incidents of dumping at that location several times, digging through the trash and trying to determine who is doing it, but it appears it’s not just one person or resident responsible. The resident who spoke said the dumping takes place at night, and out of sight from any nearby residences. Supervisor Frank Waters said the County’s Task Force had talked about placing cameras at specific locations to catch illegal dumping in the act, and the area the resident described he said, “might be a good spot.”

Wittrock said the cameras are available from “Keep Iowa Beautiful” (, free of charge to the County. They’re paid for through tax dollars and other funds. The organization will place the cameras independently when a call is received. She said the Task Force is working on a media campaign to try and make the public understand the importance of proper waste disposal, and the alternatives that are available. Wittrock says the task force wants the public to keep an eye out for illegal dumping, and to report it to authorities when you see that type of suspicious activity.