A work crew cleans up city property. (Photo provided by Oak Harbor Police Department)

A work crew cleans up city property. (Photo provided by Oak Harbor Police Department)

Work crews clean up trashed sites

City property off Fakkema, 7th and Goldie cleared of carts, needles, clothing

An old stroller, plastic chairs, bike parts, shopping carts, a VCR, piles of clothing, syringes and other trash was picked up from city property by Oak Harbor city staff members and a state Department of Corrections work crew during a cleanup effort in June.

Oak Harbor Police Chief Kevin Dresker said nobody was actively camping on the sites when he posted them a few days before the cleanup, but it appeared people were living at some of the sites in the past.

The cleaned-up properties were located off of Goldie Road, Seventh Street and Fakkema Road. Trash was also picked up in Freund Marsh.

The extensive work relied on a lot of hands to help.

Dresker said the city was able to leverage help from the Department of Corrections work crew, which is made up of people who are working off public service hours ordered by the court or the state.

In addition, public works staff and police department personnel assisted with the three-day effort. The city’s code enforcement officer and members of the mayor’s new Public Safety Work Group were also involved.

“It worked out really well,” Dresker said.

“It was a symbiotic relationship. Everyone did a great job.”

Public works employees went out ahead of time to try to retrieve hypodermic needles that were discarded at the sites. Dresker said about 100 were found, including a number of them in a container; it was actually fewer than officials had expected.

Island County commissioners agreed to waive tipping fees for a limited number of dumpsters filled with junk.

The cleanup efforts were especially important in environmentally sensitive areas, such as the wetlands on Seventh Avenue and Freund Marsh, according to a city press release.

Dresker said there’s probably three or four sites on private property that are also filled with trash, but neither the Department of Corrections crew nor city employees can do cleanup work on private property for a variety of reasons.

The city’s code enforcement officer is working with the property owners to clean up these vacant properties and to post them with “no trespassing” signs.

More in News

Man gets 6 months for ‘communicating with a minor for immoral purposes’

A 32-year-old petty chief in the Navy originally accused of raping a… Continue reading

Community Green is open

The Town of Coupeville has announced that the newly improved public parking… Continue reading

Music Festival sponsorships available

Oak Harbor Music Festival is now open for 2019 sponsorship opportunities. Festival… Continue reading

After 40 years, SVC closing its South Whidbey Center

Skagit Valley College will likely shutter classrooms on South Whidbey after teaching… Continue reading

Mental health patient flees ER, steals car, leads chase

A mental health patient left the hospital against doctor’s orders, stole a… Continue reading

Photo by Maria Matson/Whidbey News-Times
                                Water Aerobics instructor Christine Burton leads a class.
Pool fixes to be completed before summer’s end

John Vanderzicht Memorial Pool in Oak Harbor is back in business, with… Continue reading

County awards land preservation grants

Island County commissioners last week awarded grants to two projects that will… Continue reading

Groundbreaking July 25 for next Habitat Home

The public is invited to attend a groundbreaking ceremony for a new… Continue reading

Most Read