San Leandro residents complain after unpremitted donation bins overrun by garbage

SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (KGO) -- It's the holiday season and many people are feeling generous, but the city of San Leandro says unpermitted donation bins are a problem. They're turning into dumping grounds for garbage.

Donation bins have sprouted up all over San Leandro and they've grown more junk piles than usable items. Michelle Landeros works at Elios Family restaurant near Floresta Blvd. and Washington Avenue. She's noticed clothes, mattresses and garbage.

"Anything you can imagine, it's just right there and they just leave they don't put it in the bin," Landeros said.

Following public complaints the city is trying to weed out the unpermitted bins, says assistant city manager Eric Engelbart.

"Unfortunately, many of them have become havens for illegal dumping and in many ways appear to be blighted," Engelbart said.

Only two organizations with 17 bins combined have gone through the proper approval process. The locations are on a city run map.

"We believe there are many more out there that are unpermitted however we don't know where they're all located," Engelbart said.

We've seen this before in Oakland and other Bay Area cities, but San Leandro leaders want to be notified of bin locations so they can tackle the mess. Some people say they'll just take items to vetted nonprofits.

"We have some here in town, you know, Davis Street community center," said San Leandro resident Tim Degrano.

By the first of the year the city plans to enforce the permitting process and clean-up.
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