A trashy situation on Staten Island: Some residents are complaining about too much garbage being left outside the city's first green public school. NY1's Talia Kaplan filed the following report.
"I would describe this as disgusting. We have to look at this every day."
Peter Wright is fed up. His home looks out at P.S. 62, which routinely leaves huge piles of trash at the curb for the city's sanitation department to collect.
"Normally, there is about 40-50 bags per day out here," the Rossville resident said.
Wright showed NY1 photos he snapped to document the problem, which he said is made even worse when raccoons get into the trash and spread it around the neighborhood.
"Sometimes Sanitation doesn't pick it up because it's not scheduled pick up days, so this is left out for numerous days at a time," Wright said.
Wright said residents have complaining ever since the school opened two years ago. Ironically, it's the city's first green school, designed to be easy on the environment by producing the energy it uses.
"It's an excessive amount of garbage for a school that's all green, that should be producing not even a quarter of that garbage every day, especially with only three grades in the school," Wright said.
"A lot of people are concerned that the garbage will blow in front of their house and they will get the summons for it," said Anthony Morangelli, who also lives nearby. "I don't want bugs and rats running around in the street here. My kids play on this block. I just don't want it. I don't want it near my house."
Homeowners said they contacted elected officials and the local community board. Board employees said they alerted the Mayor's Office and the sanitation department. But residents say the problem persists.
"Public schools have received extensive assistance and guidance from the Department of Sanitation on how to comply with the City's recycling law and the School organic program requirements, and it is incumbent upon schools to properly participate in the recycling programs. In this case, we will set up a meeting with the pertinent school staff to ensure they are properly managing their material," a sanitation department spokeswoman said in a statement to NY1.
City education department officials said they were aware of the complaints and were working with the sanitation department and the school's custodians to address the problem.
Wright said relief cannot come soon enough. "I would just like this situation fixed as soon as possible for the community," he said.