Dump Fees for Trash Cleanups Now Funded by Measure Z

IMG_20150731_103435_295More than 60 volunteers gathered over the weekend to clean up nearly 4,000 pounds of illegally dumped trash along the banks of the Eel River and in Fortuna. The trash was taken to Eel River Disposal and the dump fees are being paid by Measure Z, the half-cent sales tax passed by voters last year.

Sean Swanson, founder of the River Life Foundation, organized the clean-up. He and a group of volunteers began met at the river bar off Palmer Blvd. in Fortuna at 10 am on Friday and Saturday and worked for several hours cleaning up illegally discarded waste. This is one of many clean-ups that take place each year.

Humboldt County Public Works currently takes on much of the burden of identifying, assessing, cleaning up and disposing of most illegal dumping and hazardous material spills occurring on many public lands. Common items cleaned up include old TV sets, computers, sofas, chairs, mattresses, paint cans, garbage bags containing unknown materials, and even cars.

Prior to Measure Z, there was no dedicated funding for this service. Costs incurred from cleaning up these sites is normally paid out of the general maintenance funds, which should instead be used to maintain our already underfunded County roads and parks. The Board of Supervisors in June allocated $25,000 of Measure Z funds to be used for clean-up of illegal dump sites.

“Illegal dumping in public lands is not only a concern to the health and safety of the public, but it also adversely affects the environment, including our waterways,” said Tom Mattson, Director of Public Works. “By having Measure Z as a dedicated funding source we can help address the growing problem of illegal dumping in our beautiful community.”



  • After talking to many community members, neighbors and friends I believe that this is the kind of spending the voters expected the measure Z money to fund (and wildfire suppression) as oppose to the militant eradication efforts of the sheriff under the false pretense of environmental work. Everyone sees through that, even the enviros. Let your voice be heard Humboldt, good work people that helped with this clean up! Remember through voting the public shapes public policy..

    • Well said.

    • I agree. And I’m glad they are funding the dump fees, finally, for the clean ups. We have had several near Alderpoint and they were much needed. Much remains to be done, but it will all have to wait upon extinguishing the fires, of course.

  • This is good news. Will this fund also pay the dump fees for the group working in SoHum?

  • Outstanding! Humboldt is finally rocking it right.

  • How much of that trash is from the homeless encampments back there? Full time residents live along that section of river. So are people just cleaning up after the folks that call it home? Wouldn’t a better idea be to place a dumpster there so they can clean up their own trash and not have volunteers come out and do it for them?

    • They would tip the dumpster over and use it as shelter and continue to litter and destroy…although that would be most fitting…trash in a dumpster

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