Westport: An Attractive Dump

Alert “06880” reader Lisa Hofmeister writes:

As a Westport resident for over 4 years, I have had an issue with Westport Waste Management for a while. After today’s incident I thought “06880” could broadcast it, and hopefully get some notice.

As I disposed of my trash I saw a white unmarked van with New York license plates pull up. Two 25-year old-ish men dressed in work clothes started to remove trash bags, a bathroom sink and countertop, dry wall, wooden baseboard, etc., and throw it all into our dump. There was no one nearby, so I went to the hut by the entrance to report them.

Westport transfer station

For a town that is so strict on summer beach passes, deer rights over residents, prohibiting dogs on the beach 6 months out of the year and making residents get approval to remove any vegetation on their property if wetlands are involved, I wondered why we are not more strict with our trash removal — something residents pay directly for.

It could be as simple as picking up a sticker for your car — just like the beach. Benefits would include reduced tax dollars, as residents and the town would not pay for non-resident trash removal. The town could also track how many residents use it versus private contractors.

I checked the town website (Public Works Department). Two sentences address who is eligible to use the transfer station: 

Westport residents are allowed to dispose of a variety of household items that includes furniture, carpeting, lamps, televisions and many other similar items. An area has been set aside for recycling household electronics.

The transfer station is frequently used by contractors working on Westport homes.

And, of course, by others. Including guys in vans with New York plates.

7 responses to “Westport: An Attractive Dump

  1. Jamie Walsh

    Is it possible that this contractor was working locally…permitted for a home improvement or possibly a national retailer who employees out of state contractors to do their renovation or maintainance work? If so are they required to pickup a dump ticket from The Town?
    The Town issued me a dump sticker several years ago at the yard waste facility upon showing my driver’s license which is affixed to the underside of my tailgate. I will admit…no one has ever asked to see it or checked for it as I passed through the gate. Just wondering?

  2. Kitty Graves

    I too have been struck by how lax our DPW is about who can use the Transfer Station. A friend who moved to Fairfield continued to bring her trash to Westport so she wouldn’t have to pay the Fairfield fee. Both Norwalk and Darien strictly enforce resident-only use and charge yearly fees for permission.

  3. John McCarthy

    It costs us real $ money every time someone uses the dump, as we pay the central waste collector in Nridgeport for everything we send there. So if out of towners are using our dump, we are all paying the price through higher taxes.

  4. John McCarthy

    But there is a cost to check residency status and issue stickers and check stickers at the dump, so should weigh the cost of enforcement against the estimated additional costs out of town dumpers impose in the town.

  5. Don Willmott

    All I can say is I LOVE chucking big hunks of junk down into that giant bin. Especially glass things! Smash!!!

  6. Virginia Tienken

    Have to say the transfer station used to be a more pleasant place. When you drove into the recycle area Eric was always there with a smile and an offer of help. The same for Artie at the top. Now there is no one around and it makes it easy for any one to dump anything they want to.

  7. Kitty Graves

    Indeed that was the case. I think I’ve had two new cars since then and have never had to go back to Town Hall to collect a new W sticker.