MONROE COUNTY, Pa. — Combating illegal dumping in Monroe County has its ups and downs.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, this illegal activity is up about 30 percent, according to Monroe County Municipal Waste Authority Police Capt. Jacqueline Bagu.
"It's happening in a combination of all areas. Between some of the rural areas, but I mean, we've seen some right out, blatantly out in major roadways, so it's happening everywhere," said Bagu.
The authority is investigating more than a dozen dumping sites throughout the county.
Capt. Bagu says people are leaving a little bit of everything behind.
"I mean we've seen household garbage, furniture, construction and demolition debris, lots of that and lots of illegal burning as well," said Bagu.
With Memorial Day Weekend coming up, waste officials want to remind people to bring trash bags with them and clean up any mess that is made. Violators face heavy fines if caught, up to $1,000.
"Please don't contribute to the trash. If you see anything, do not contribute to the trash. Secondly, if you feel compelled to do something great for the county or environment, it doesn't hurt to take a bag with you and pick up a couple of things along the way, but please do it all safely," said Bagu.
If you witness someone dumping or littering, the Monroe County Municipal Waste Authority wants to know about it. To make a report, call 570-643-6102.