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October 27, 2017 8:23 pm

Surveillance Cameras Needed to Combat Illegal Dumping says Skakun

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 @ 6:00 AM

Photos courtesy Brian Skakun

Prince George, B.C. – A Prince George City Councillor says it’s time the city took extra measures to combat illegal dumping.

Brian Skakun is calling for the installation of surveillance technology on area roads and trails where dumping is a problem.illegal-2

“Well, Sunday I was on a bit of a hike up by PGARA race track and I found some freshly dumped piles of garbage – everything from teddy bears to kitchen utensils, a cupboard. Big piles of junk people dumped versus paying the $6 fee at the Foothills landfill.”

He argues the cameras wouldn’t be expensive – just $200 – and figures warning signs would help to.

“We can put up signs saying surveillance cameras in the area but no one will know where they’ll be. We can’t have them everywhere but I think the point is you’ve got to get people thinking they can’t do this. That they’re going to get caught and they’re going to get shamed.”

He’s also in favour of better enforcement rather than increasing the fine for illegal dumping (The ticket for illegal dumping is $100 with a ceiling of $5,000 if it goes to court).

Skakun is also in favour of partnering with the Regional District of Fraser-Fort George or even the provincial government on the issue.

“It’s not just a local issue, it’s a provincial issue. Maybe there’s a role for the province to play but so many of these roads are easily accessed” he says.

“I went down by a road by the new jail and there were so many dump spots. People are dumping everything, it’s quite disappointing.”


For most people six dollars to dump garbage is nothing, but for some they will just then dump it where ever and this will never change. Charging people to use the landfill was the dumbest idea ever. It should be covered by general revenue from property taxes and free to cross the gate. The whole bureaucracy around the landfill is rediculous… But they say it’s reduced the amount of garbage collected?

It’s also going to turn our backroads into a police state where everyone is a suspect and access is then blocked or denied due to potential dumping.

First thing that needs to be done IMO is reopen the transfer sites that were closed like on 18th avenue… And if one is willing to transport it to the landfill themselves then they should be allowed to dump free of charge.

    Eagleone, you are right on! Raising the rates due to less garbage, was one of the dumbest things the Regional District did. Cutting back on staff should have been part of the actions taken! The City has two seats on the Regional District, but seem to go along with any hair brained idea they come up with?

    right on.

    I agree. I’d much rather absorb the cost of the landfill in taxes than encourage illegal dumping

There is also an issue of illegal dumping on private sites like malls and warehouses. Even with a plate number there is nothing the RCMP will do. Once it is on your property it is yours to deal with. End of the month moving day is the worst, why do I want to transport your old couch to the dump for you and pay the fee after you toss it out by my dumpster?

They are charging way to much at the dump; I was helping a guy, who was cleaning up, his the charge was $13 and they charge double if no tarp on it, even if it can’t blow. no tarp double. In my view the charge is too much, rip the public off, it is not a case of $6, it a bunch of money

I want to add, it was a tarp load or the charge would have been $26

dump should be free if you bring it in a pick-up, car trunk or trailer. more money-grubbing now than ever. And hey, what’s up with my City Utility fees going up almost ten percent with a note how it’s going up again. WTF? get outta my pocket. I’m not your cash cow.

Skakun, usually I agree with your standing, but not this one. Stop spending our money on cameras, divert those funds into something else. This is a huge region and people will continue to dump where there are no cameras. Treat the illness not the symptom.

obviously its the 6$ cost at the landfill. Instead of spending money on catching people you never will, have a free day at the dump even once every two weeks… spend money on that instead.

Most of us said this was going to happen when they started charging,
Now with more of us switching to smaller garbage cans, because we recycle, the city is going to up the utilities to compensate.
When is council going to learn that come election time we vote council members out not in.
Remember this come next election.

Maybe the city shouldn’t have shut down the transfer station on Quinn. For some it’s too much of an inconvenience to drive up to the top of the Hart…

Really ??? they charge double if no tarp???

Skakun needs to explore other avenues other than wasting money on cameras that will be stolen or smashed..

Re open the swap sheds..

Lower the fees to 3 bucks. People already spend money on gas just going there… encourage them to come by lowering rates

Welll at least we know one councillor that hikes around town..

When they first pitched the idea of paying to dump small loads at the landfill, I said back then that it was a mistake. I was also correct when I said that many will take the low road and dump their garbage in ditches and dead end roads because they didn’t want to pay the 6 bucks. I fully agree with all statements saying that the local transfer stations need to be put back into service. I also agree with opening the gate and letting all non-commercial dumpers use the landfill for free. I also hate the tarping nazis. Every time I go across the scale, I am properly tied down and have never lost a thing out of the back of my truck yet they always look in my truck to check if they can double my fee. I will also tell you that when I have my garbage in my truck, I am aware of it and will keep on eye on the load to ensure that nothing blows off the back of the truck. If something happened to fall off or blow out, I would stop and pick it up. If you are going to start paying for enforcement of people screwing over a 6 dollar dump charge with cameras and tickets etc. save the money by opening the gate.

It’s not “Tarp your Load” or pay double. It’s secure your load, either with a tarp, cargo net, crisscrossing ropes, etc. AND I am in agreement with this requirement. I travel up and down Foothills, and I am tired of all the garbage that collects along this route to the Dump.
There is so many careless people that do not worry about their garbage blowing out of the trucks, or utility trailers! City Garbage trucks are also sometimes guilty of this mess along Foothills.

I have to take the Citys side on this one regarding the tarps. There are so many clowns driving around that are totally oblivious to the garbage blowing out the back of their truck, however if someone can’t figure out how to properly secure cargo how does the city expect them to secure a tarp? I once saw a large garbage bag on the highway get hit by a truck, it was full of Styrofoam, I mean, c’mon, figure it out..

The land fill is a joke I had some cardboard and two bags of heavy wet grass. The bags of grass were put on the cardboard so absolutely no chance of anything flying out of the box of my truck the person working wanted to fine me because there was no strap, his words were “this will be an expensive fine” mine were “ok I will go somewhere else”. I understand some idiots drive around with big loads without properly securing but I’m five feet away from recycling and properly disposing maybe we should not punish people for doing the right thing. It was on my way to go by a transfer station at least those are still free and don’t punish you for disposing properly.

The transfer station at 18th and Quinn when it first opened cost $2.00, it then went to $4.00 and then to $6.00, and then they closed it and you have to go to the foothills dump, pay $6.00 plus the additional driving.

They also closed the swap station, and the sani-dump.

The obvious question is why would they close the Quinn St., station. The City has some BS story about saving $260,000.00 per year by having this garbage handled by the Regional District, and the Regional District says it needs to charge the $6.00 because it costs them extra to process this garbage. In fact they were already processing the garbage and being paid by the City by the tonne delivered to the site.

So why did they change a system that cost us huge money to build, and force us to go to the Foothills site, while the site on Quinn St., sits empty.?????

You can still use Quinn St., for yard waste, but not garbage, so they do have some staff on hand.

This was a bad move by the City, and Skakun was on Council when the decision was made. Perhaps he can explain why Council created this problem.

Let their be no doubt the Council of the day has to take responsibility for their decisions.

Putting up camera’s in the bush and spying on people is not a solution. Reinstating Quinn St Station, and increasing surveillance on back roads is a solution.

Looks like the best business in Canada, better than a GOLD MINE

People just need to start behaving like adults and accept some personal responsibility for the trash their lifestyle generates. If you can afford to buy all that crap, you can certainly afford to pay to dispose of it properly. Expecting the rest of us to foot the bill for your excessive wasted is not acceptable to those of us who are responsible enough to dispose of our garbage properly.

    You are exactly correct. The sense of entitlement is hard to extinguish in this community.

The city provides weekly garbage pickup to every household with the exception of some apartments who have the large bins. The homeowners are charged based on what sized container they decide to use. If they have garbage in excess of what their bin can hold they should pay accordingly.

Why should those people who produce excess garbage or try to pinch a few pennies by having an undersized bin be subsidized by re-opening a money losing transfer station?

Living on the west side we use the Vanway station maybe once a year for oversized items that will not fit in the can. Did not mind the fee there even when the Foothill landfill was free. Use the recyling part on a more regular basis for compostable yard waste, metal, used oil etc.

It is too bad that the swap sheds had to go away because of the “crows” that used to hang around on a regular basis. Maybe one way to bring them back is to put them in the area that only people who have paid to dump their garbage have access to.

As for the illegal dumpers the city should get good evidence on a few and make an example of them by taking them to court and try to get tha maximum fine imposed.

BTW The spring cleanup bins around the city are free…usually the last Sunday in April.

Sparrow. Why indeed would the City run a money losing operation.

So the real question is. Why did they build it in the first place. Was the idea sold to the general public as being a money losing operation, or was the cost of the Quinn St. transfer station included in the overall cost of garbage that we pay for on our utility bills.??

How can you defend the City for building this hugely expensive transfer station, and then defend them for closing it. They cant have it both ways. Either they were wrong when the built if or they were wrong when they closed it down.

Unless you actually have access to all the information surrounding the decision making on this subject, you cannot make a learned decision.

In my humble opinion there is more to the story of closing Quinn St,. than the City is telling us.

I suggest you keep your eye on this site in the coming years, and the answer will be revealed.

    I in no way defended the decision to build the garbage transfer station. When the aquatic center was built and the old transfer station shut down that should have been the end of it for hauling garbage up the hill.

    Even if it was known that the hauling of garbage would lose money at the time it was built so what? It can and should be a normal and regular practice for the city to look at where the money is spent and where savings can be made. As I stated earlier every house in the city has their garbage hauled on a weekly basis so the transfer station is a duplication of services and should be shut down. If it was losing $20k a month there is no way that people would have paid the fees required to make it revenue neutral.

    That being said the bowl are should have a drop off point for compostable yard waste, metal, batteries, used oil, etc to keep those kind of things out of the landfill. I have not been to the Quinn St station but get the impression they provide most of those services so the money invested has not gone to waste.

    The question I would have for you is exactly how much garbage does your household produce and what sized bin do you have? If I had a nickel for every time you posted about this lunch would be on you today.

      Sparrow. Only two people in my house, and we have a medium size can, plus we recycle.

      People who have excessive garbage used to drop it off at Quinn St., for a minimum cost, however the cost continues to rise.

      My bitch is that the City should be able to handle these situations better. As an example they replaced the old garbage trucks with the new ones, however the new ones could only handle half of a regular truck load, so they ended up making twice as many trips to the landfill,. I think they have since replaced these little trucks with bigger ones. Furthermore the new trucks only require one driver, however I am not aware of any reduction in staff when they went to the new system.

      In other words there are a number of financial questions regarding garbage disposal that need to be answered. Specifically just how much is it now costing us as opposed to the old system. That would be a good start.

      Having people drive their garbage to the landfill, has a cost attached to it. So if you are looking at costs, then you would need to know how many people deliver their garbage to the landfill and how much it costs, plus factor in the fuel burnt, etc;. Then compare these costs to the cost of having the City transport the garbage to the landfill from the Quinn St., transfer station,.

      I think that we can all agree that when the City looks at their costs, they do not factor in the costs that have to be picked up by citizens because of their decisions, and therefore we can conclude that the end result is not correct.

      Why should the costs that people have to fork out to haul excess garbage to Foothills or Vanway have any bearing. If they have a full to overflowing bin on a regular basis they should look at upsizing. If they already have a large bin should look at diverting some of it to the blue boxes. If they have a large bin and are recycling and still have excess should pay for the drive up the hill north or west. Don’t want the cost then a change in lifesyle might be in order.

      We have a small bin and there are times when it goes two weeks before hitting the curb and if push came to shove I’m sure we could make due with twice monthly service like Quesnel has done.

      As for the trucks and staffing, not sure what happened there. I would bet that workplace injuries were reduced quite a bit so that’s something. The drivers and helpers were part of the outside workers union, Colin gifted them a no layoff clause and would have to look at the contract to see how change of technology fits in.
      Again I have never said the city is lean and mean when it comes to staffing and have zero confidence that the current mayor, council and city manager have what it takes to address any bloat in the rank and file.

    I think you mentioned it before, they didn’t want a busy garbage dump and sani station that close to their new offices.

OK heres my spin if the foot hills transfer station wants to make money or break even put a camera in collection booth. last spring i bought 6 loads of compost & noticed if asked for a reciept the $30 went in the right hand till if no reciept money went in left hand drawer. Am wondering if this happens with the $6 also. not sure why just an o0bservation

I’m not sure why everyone thinks it’s $6 to dump at the Foothills landfill. That’s just the minimum.

Just this past weekend I brought up some yard cleanup from a tree removal and a old rotten boards and it was $45. I’d say i make about 6 trips a year to the dump and they average $40 each time. I think the least i was ever charged was $19.

    No scales at the Vanway transfer station, just one price.

    It’s 6 bucks for 100kg minimum and $77 a tonne after that. To get a $40 charge at the landfill you would have 519kg to dump. That’s 1144 pounds for us old timers.

    You generate over 6500 pounds of garbage a year? On top of your weekly pickup by the City?

Are the attendants load security experts? Is there a certification? What gives them the right to judge ones load is secure or not?

As timeforjustice says, who just pays $6 and people wonder why garage winds up in the bush.

As timeforjustice says its not the $6 that kills you its if you go over their weight limit that gets you but then $6 to throw out a bag of popcorn is excessive also.

Wow. It’s absolutely astonishing to me that this Councilor continually gets among the highest number of votes, because this is the same sort of logic that issues from the man time and again. I have no doubt his heart is in the right place most of the time, but he shouldn’t be helping to craft public policy. He clearly doesn’t think things through before opening his mouth. I think we could do a lot better for the $30 odd thousand dollars we shell out per representative annually.

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