Re-posted from SacCounty News, May 17, 2017
In order to tackle the impacts of illegal camping and other crime within County Parks and the American River Parkway, Sacramento County Regional Parks introduced the Park Resource Team in January 2017. The Park Resources Team (PRT), consists a dedicated crew of five park rangers and four maintenance staff focusing primarily on the impacts of illegal camping, crime, and trash removal.
“Regional Parks deployed the Park Resource Team in January to areas hardest hit by recent flooding and illegal camping trash,” said Jeff Leatherman, Director, Sacramento County Regional Parks. “Through the work of the team, we’ve been able to improve our response and cleaning up areas impacted by illegal camping, making our parks and Parkway a better place for visitors to recreate.”
Since January, the PRT has:
- Made 65 arrests
- Issued 150 citations
While the rangers continue their law enforcement efforts, County Parks maintenance staff work to remove debris accumulated from illegal dumping and flooding. This year, the maintenance team received the addition of a lightweight tractor and the support of a debris transfer vehicle—both courtesy of the County’s Department of Waste Management and Recycling.
With the addition of the tractor, maintenance staff can remove more debris than was previously removed with hand crews. The equipment also ensures maintenance staff safety by minimizing the amount of trash staff have to hand load into trucks for transport to the dumpsters or landfill. The machinery also assists staff in collecting heavy debris such as mattresses, couches, and large containers, in hard-to-reach places along the Parkway.
Additionally, trash dumpsters are emptied daily, minimizing the re-depositing of trash back into the park system from the dumpsters.
Between January-May, the maintenance team has removed 165.5 tons of garbage from the Regional Park system.