Memphis City Council to vote on task force to combat illegal dumping and blight

Published: Jun. 20, 2022 at 9:59 PM CDT

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - City leaders said, it’s time to get serious and tackle some city-wide problems such as illegal dumping and blight.

Memphis City Council is set to vote on a task force that would compare and share data and information on blight and illegal dumping around Memphis in hopes of finding a solution.

You’ve probably seen tires, mattresses, boxes and other unwanted items trashing neighborhoods around the greater Memphis area.

A Whitehaven homeowner told Action News 5 that he’s gone around his neighborhood to clean up what others have left behind.

He asked that we conceal his identity for this story.

“It’s frustrating but like I say, it had to be done, because it was an eyesore,” said the homeowner. “Every day I kept looking at it. I can’t stand filth.

He says over the last few months he’s noticed an increase in illegal dumping, but said his calls to the city to get it cleaned up have gone unanswered.

“I’m seeing tires,” said the homeowner. “I’m seeing tree debris. Regular garbage. Furniture, mattresses you name it.”

Illegal dumping and blight is something Memphis City Council plans to tackle in an upcoming meeting.

“We get calls all day everyday, emails everyday, texts even about illegal dumping about blight about trash about litter,” said City councilwoman Rhonda Logan. “People are really tired of it. People feel imposed upon and upset. It really devalues property, the community. It’s even an environmental issue.”

Councilwoman Rhonda Logan says councilors will vote on a resolution Tuesday that would form a task force with Public Works and councilors, community members, non-profits and others to work together to combat the problem.

“Everyone’s working in a silo,” said Logan. “We want to make certain that we are maximizing the opportunity, bringing everyone together and looking at what’s being done.”

Neighbors in one Raleigh community say a pile of furniture, clothes, toys, and more have sat there for at least two weeks after the homeowners moved out and have now created an eyesore on their street.

Logan says this is an example of what she’s seen in her district and it’s time to bring the community to the table.

“We all have a hand in this,” said Logan. “It’s time now to take it to the next level, to be intentional, to be deliberate in our approach to finding solutions.”

If you see illegal dumping in your neighborhood, you can report it to 311.

Memphis City Council is set to discuss and vote on the resolution tomorrow at their meeting.

We’ll keep you updated on how they vote.

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