South Omaha neighbors frustrated with illegal dumping issue

Illegal garbage dumping in a south Omaha neighborhood is frustrating nearby residents.
Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 7:09 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - There’s a concern about illegal dumping at a cul-de-sac near Albright Park. Neighbors said it’s been happening for nearly three years.

Stephen Bolgar is one of those neighbors who comes out to the cul-de-sac to pick up trash at least three times a month.

On Monday, he found dumped sofa chairs and a window. There were also dumped cigarettes, broken glass, and many empty bottles.

“There are no dumping signs around here and there’s no deterrent for dumping,” Bolgar said. “You know it would help if it was more lit up.”

Bolgar is a part of the Mandan Neighborhood Association. One of his jobs is to make sure areas like these in South Omaha are safe and clean.

But, with the amount of stuff here, it’s a responsibility that’s too much to handle.

“It’s a safety issue,” Bolgar said.

He and other neighbors have reached out to the city for help, but they haven’t received a clear answer.

Omaha Public Works, however, is aware of the illegal dumping.

“It is criminal behavior and it is wrong and it’s unfortunate for people that live nearby these sites,” Austin Rowser, Omaha Public Works Director said.

Anyone who illegally dumps on private property in Nebraska can be sentenced to three months of jail, according to state law.

“It’s something people shouldn’t be doing,” Rowser said. “It’s bad for the community.”

Omaha Public Works has cleaned up the area and for now, this is the only thing they can do.

They won’t put up a sign unless the Omaha Police Department requests one.

OPD has to catch the illegal dumping in action. So far, they haven’t.

“We’re always happy to comply with that and we’re always happy to comply with law enforcement,” Rowser said.

But Bolgar believes the city and OPD aren’t trying hard enough to stop the issue.

“Trash seems to be a lower priority,” Bolgar said.

Now, even though the area has been cleaned up neighbors are still concerned. Illegal dumping can be harmful to their health and even wildlife in the family park nearby.

6 News asked the city what they’re doing to prevent this issue from happening again. They declined to answer.