A new bill in the City Council would fine restaurants that do not clean up after their leaky trash bags. NY1's Rocco Vertuccio filed the following report.
Let's face it, walking down a New York City sidewalk can be a bit messy for one's feet.
"It's disgusting. Just walked up to the corner where by the restaurant where garbage trucks stops everyday, filthy," said one New Yorker.
They're talking about the stains left behind on sidewalks in front of restaurants after the sanitation department collects the trash. It's usually cooking grease and oil that leaks out of the bags, leaving behind a smelly mess.
"Especially the liquid that comes out from those bags that's dangerous you know what I mean?" said one New Yorker.
City Councilwoman Margaret Chin wants to clean up the problem. She has introduced a bill that would require restaurant owners to clean up any liquid waste on their sidewalks that leaks out of the trash bags.
Violators will be fined $100 to $500 for the first offense. Repeat offenders could be fined up to $900. Chin says this will not only keep the city clean, but it will also help fight rats.
Many New Yorkers who spoke with NY1 in Chelsea seemed to agree.
"You don't want to be walking through it, trekking through it. Summer is coming people are gonna be wearing flip flops. Gross," one New Yorker pointed out.
"I think they should wash if off, it's disgusting, it smells," noted another New Yorker.
The owners of the Chelsea Square Restaurant say they power wash their sidewalks several times a week and agree owners should keep their sidewalks clean. But they say fines take it a step too far.
"It's difficult as it is now everything is very expensive food wise purchasing wise I mean we do the best we can," said Chelsea Square Restaurant owner Nick Mavromichalis.
Chin says this is a simple and reasonable requirement and not an unfair burden especially when considering the benefits.