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Amarillo residents frustrated by polluted alleys

Some Amarillo residents say they have had trash piled up in their alleyways for months. They say they have called the city, but it is still there. (Photo of alley in northeast Amarillo by resident Tracie West)

Trash is piling up in parts of Amarillo and some residents say the city is doing nothing.

Residents in northeast Amarillo tell ABC 7 News large items of trash have been sitting in their alleyways next to their dumpsters for months. They say they have called the city countless times, but the trash is still there.

"It's very frustrating," said Tracie West, Amarillo resident who has trash in her alley. "I'm very, very upset about it because I mean we can't even get to our dumpster we can't even open our fence. It's just frustrating."

Because it is blocking her fence, she says she has to walk around to the back alley to take her trash to the dumpster.

"Some of this stuff you cannot put it in the dumpster, so they do put it beside the dumpster so the trash people can pick it up, but yet they don't do it," said West.

Another resident in a different part of town says he has had similar issues.

"Yeah right here vehicles can't drive down the alley cause they don't want their vehicle scratched or their tire to be poked," said Terral Walker, resident who has trash in his alley.

Walker says he and his neighbors have also called the city, but it has not been picked up in months.

ABC 7 News spoke with Amarillo's Director of Public Works who says a new alley clean-up program started in the middle of June and they are still working out details.

Alley Clean-up Program

The city is now encouraging residents with large items that they want to dispose of to put them out on their front curb.

"We're sweeping through all our alleys in the city of Amarillo, picking up brush, bulky items and construction material to try to clean up our alleys," said Raymond Lee, Director of Public Works for the city of Amarillo. "We have noticed this has been a concern of residents and is really impacting the quality of life within residents of Amarillo."

Lee says they are working as fast as they can to clean up all of the trash and when ABC 7 showed him pictures of West's alley, this was his response:

"This is something that we would want to address immediately because it's blocking true access through the alley so once I get this address I will assign it to one of my crews and make sure we address this by this weekend," Lee said.

He says they get around 50 calls per day and try to hit the worst areas the quickest. He wants to remind residents that this is a new program and they are working to cover the entire city.

"When a citizen has a concern like that, they can feel free to call the public works department, give that concern to me so I can investigate," said Lee.

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