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One Step Forward Two Steps Back

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Last week Brockport took a giant step forward in improving its code enforcement. Garbage that had been place at the curb early was removed after someone told the people responsible that there is a 36 hour time limit allowed by the Village Code.

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By Friday evening and Saturday morning, Brockport had taken two steps backwards. There is trash on the streets again, and some of it is in the same place on Clinton Street as it was last week.

Also, last week two dead sofas, were placed by the curb outside the rental house at the northeast corner of Erie and Utica Streets. But then they were moved off the street and piled in front of the dumpster at the end of the driveway.

Then they disappeared, and it seemed that some college students had taken them for their rental apartment.

But they must stink or something, because on Saturday, they were piled by the curb again, a couple of blacks away at 110 Holley Street.

Brockport’s code enforcement has been so bad for so long that people have gotten so used to piles of garbage on the streets, that they think it’s normal.

Last week there were two different dead sofas pile by the curb on College Street. When I asked a long time College Street resident why he didn’t walk up the street and ask the college students to please move the trash off the street until just before garbage pick-up, or call the code enforcement office and notify them.

He replied, “I’m not a vigilante.”

Whoa! Asking your neighbors to be neighborly is not being a vigilante. A vigilante implies violence and taking the law into your own hands.

Asking the college students to obey the law is an example of doing your civic duty.

First of all, the college students have probably never been told about the garbage rules laid down in the Village Code, so they have

Second, the code enforcement officer has a tough job getting the garbage situation clean up, and he can use your help. He can’t be everywhere at once. So let him know when and where there’s a problem.

At least give him the chance to act on it.

But too many Brockport residents turn their heads and look the other way. That’s the same thing they did for years when Rich Miller was voting illegally in Brockport elections even though he lived in Orleans County.

Miller got away with it because no one would step up and do anything about it.

There’s trash on the streets again because no one is willing to step up and do anything about it. But things can be different.

Last week, my sister, who is vacationing in Maine, went to the Portland Museum of Art, see an exhibit of paintings by Richard Estes, America's foremost Photorealist painter.One of the paintings was of a street in Manhattan with garbage pile on the sidewalk by the curb.

One of the museum visitors said, “That’s not real, you’d never see that much garbage on the street.”

My sister said, “Oh yes you would. I grew up in New York City and there is garbage on the street all the time.”

That museum visitor comes from a place where people just don’t tolerate trash on the streets. That could be just about any town or village in the country.

Has Brockport become like New York City, where people just ignore the garbage on the streets?

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