Residents of San Jose Neighborhood Frustrated With Illegal Dumping, City’s Lax Response

Frustration is mounting for residents of a San Jose neighborhood, where trash and used furniture has been illegally dumped on sidewalks and, in some cases, has been sitting there for a month.

Neighbors counted at least four piles of trash and junk and say they can’t get anyone to pick it up. They've spent hours on the phone and even tried knocking on doors at City Hall. And they’re still waiting for answers.

Marques Bartice said his kids have to walk past the unsightly trash piles every morning on their way to school. Old mattresses, couches and lots of trash in the east foothills neighborhood where homes are valued at just under a $1 million.

"Our homes are not cheap in this area," Bartice said. "But this is discouraging for anybody trying to keep the value of their homes."

Bartice says he’s been trying to get the city to clean up the mess, and he’s not alone. Neighbor Eric Nordinger wants something done about a truck full of trash that has been parked on his street for about a month.

"I tried to report it," he said. "At least red tag it. I don’t know if he’s moved in there or not."

Neighbors discovered it is the responsibility of the city’s Department of Environmental Services to remove the trash once they are notified. The department told NBC Bay Area residents can report illegal dumping either by phoning the department, emailing it or using its mobile app.

Neighbors said they have contacted the department. Bartice said he was told he had to find the right company to haul it away.

"They’re the ones who gave me the information about me contacting the waste company," he said.

And his neighbor said he tried to file a complaint online.

"I’m not a computer savvy person," the neighbor said. "I tried to put it in, and it wouldn’t let me in."

Graffiti also has become a problem, and neighbors now fear the blight will attract criminals and crime.

"I’m worried about the element of individuals who this area attracts when you leave it like this," Bartice said.

A representative for the Department of Environmental Services said she is working on finding out where the breakdown in communications happened.

To report illegal dumping to the Department of Environmental Services, San Jose residents can call 408-535-3500, email to or use the My San Jose mobile app.

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