Sandoval County enacts incentive program to stop illegal dumping

03/11/2022 – By Anna Padilla with KRQE News 13

SANDOVAL COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – Illegal dumping remains a problem in Sandoval County, but now there’s an incentive for residents to clean it up. Commissioner Dave Heil has set aside $10,000 for his discretionary funds for a new incentive program.

“Maybe we can come up with a program that can get people, maybe individuals, maybe non-profits who would like to make a little bit of money for their organization, go out and clean up these various dumpsites,” said Heil.

You can sign up with the county and select an already identified problem area. Once the trash is picked up, you can take it to the county’s landfill and receive $100. Commissioner Heil says illegal dumping has been a problem in Sandoval County for decades.

“It’s so hard to catch people in the dumping and you go out and clean up an area and then two months later the dump is regenerated itself,” said Heil. “It’s trying to change people’s habits by ‘let’s go to the landfill and stop dumping it and let’s stop dumping it in the deserts.’”

So far, the city has posted 25 dumpsites up for cleaning. If you come across one not already listed, Commissioner Heil says you can notify the county about it. Then a code enforcement officer will go out, take pictures, and add it to the list. Visit the county’s website for a list of clean-up locations.