The number of people getting $100 fines for putting residential garbage in the city's trash cans dropped 78 percent from fiscal year 2012 to 2013.
The Sanitation Department says nearly 4,200 tickets were handed in 2012, compared with just 922 in 2013.
The department is blaming Hurricane Sandy for the decline, saying many of its enforcement officers were moved to traffic duty after the storm.
But it's also not easy to hand out tickets.
To issue a fine, those officers must actually catch a person in the act of putting their home trash in public garbage cans.