Councilman: Midwood, Borough Park, Bensonhurst All Seeing A Big Problem

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Residents in parts of Brooklyn have said enough is enough when it comes to trash littering their neighborhoods.

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As 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported Tuesday, businesses are thriving in the bustling Midwood section of the borough. But garbage is thriving too.

Borough Park and Bensonhurst have been suffering from the same sanitation problem, CBS 2’s John Slattery reported.

Marilyn Leiman of Midwood told D’Auria the garbage was the worst she had seen in 50 years in the community.

“I never saw it such a mess. If you walk down Avenue J, it’s just awful. And the other thing that gets me is a lot of tourists come here. They come to eat in the kosher pizza store. They come from Israel; from Los Angeles. And I’m so ashamed that they come here and see what it looks like,” Leiman said.

At the junction of Avenue J and East 14th Street, the trash was spilling far out of its intended receptacle — and was piled up in bags and heaps next to it.

“We literally have piles and piles of garbage,” City Councilman David Greenfield (D-44th.) said.

Greenfield fired a salvo at the Department of Sanitation, saying several commercial strips in Midwood, Borough Park and Bensonhurst are under-served.

“They’re allowing mounds of trash to pile up in our prime commercial areas,” he said.

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Greenfield, who praised Sanitation efforts along residential streets, said commercial strips such as Avenue J, Avenue M and Kings Highway, don’t get the service they need. He provided photos taken over a three-day period. The owner of a bagel shop said he sees the trash mounds.

“All over the place, all over, and in the can for sure, but whatever doesn’t fit they have on the ground,” said the owner, Hershie Oberlander.

The merchants were unsure of the number of pick-ups, but the councilman said there’s only one pickup a week. He protested that Bay Ridge residents not far away get two pickups a week.

But a spokeswoman for the Sanitation Department said trash is actually picked up four times a week in the problem areas.

“Regular collection trucks service the area (Ave J + East 15th Street) on Tuesday and Fridays. In addition, there is a dedicated basket truck servicing the area on Sunday and Monday. Those baskets are serviced four days a week,” said spokeswoman Belinda Mager.

But whether the number is one or four, Greenfield’s office said the area needs additional pick-ups, especially with some people illegally dumping residential trash bags into the baskets.

And in this time of security cameras everywhere Greenfield said a pilot program to monitor trash baskets with security cameras is warranted.

A spokesman for Sanitation said the department is working with elected officials, the community board, and merchants along Avenue J to solve the issue of overflowing trash baskets.

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