City of East St. Louis partners with nonprofit to end illegal dumping

The City of East St. Louis has partnered with a Metro East nonprofit to combat illegal dumping.
Published: May. 24, 2023 at 6:35 PM CDT
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EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (KMOV) - The City of East St. Louis has partnered with a Metro East nonprofit to combat illegal dumping.

East St. Louis city officials will work with Empire 13, a nonprofit aimed at ending systemic racism and environmental injustice.

The nonprofit started hosting neighborhood cleanups in 2020 as part of its End Illegal Dumping Campaign. Since the initiative launched, Empire 13 has had meetings with U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth’s office, U.S. Representative Nikki Budzinski, the Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The nonprofit held a cleanup at 17th and Broadway in East St. Louis Wednesday. The City of East St. Louis provided construction vehicles, dumpsters and paid city employees.

“East St. Louis has no right or no rhyme or reason to look the way that it does when it sits in the same county as Belleville, O’Fallon and Fairview Heights,” Dixon told News 4. “This is just part of that progressive campaign to bring justice and equity and resources to the City of East St. Louis.”

“It’s bad in our own neighborhood in our own city,” East St. Louis resident Monica Davis said. “We ain’t got to live like this.”

The City of East St. Louis has ordinances that allow the city to fine illegal dumpers up to $750, and citizens can be rewarded up to $250 if they report an illegal dumper and that person is convicted.

Dixon believes cameras can also be a quick solution, but the city has to find the money. Another meeting involving federal and local officials over illegal dumping will happen on May 31.