Landfill vandals worth $1,000

March 26, 2003 11:00 pm

By ABBY SOUZA

Beware if you have been riding an off-road vehicle on the Groveland Landfill property — there is a $1,000 bounty on your head.

Public Works Director Peter Rei asked the Board of Supervisors Tuesday for the authority to offer a reward for information leading to the conviction of those responsible for recurring vandalism at the Groveland landfill.

"There was a substantial amount of damage done out there," Rei said.

The 5-acre landfill, in the process of being closed, has not accepted trash since May 2001. The landfill contents — reported in July 2002 to be 125,000 cubic yards of garbage — has since been covered. The county is spending $1.2 million to close the landfill, including putting in ventilating systems to remove methane gas produced by festering trash and spreading grass seed to comply with government codes.

But the erosion-control measures have failed because off-road vehicles have been tearing up the property at the end of Merrell Road.

"It's been an ongoing problem. It's happening all the time," said Marilyn Bird, office manager for Moore Brothers Scavenger Co. Inc., Big Oak Flat.

She said much of the costly seeding has been completely ruined by motorcycles and other four-wheel vehicles.

"I'm so fed up with them," she said.

Rei told the board someone has cut paths through the Manzanita surrounding the property to bring vehicles in and out. The scalehouse has also been broken into repeatedly, he said.

In Rei's proposal to the board, he suggested the reward be $500, but the supervisors thought a higher amount would make for better motivation to turn in the culprits.

The board voted 5-0 for the $1,000 reward to be given to whoever gives the tip that leads to the arrest and conviction of the illegal off-roaders.

"Let's catch 'em," District 2 Supervisor Paolo Maffei said.

Bird agrees the reward will help find whoever has been riding through the landfill.