LANSING — State Rep. Cynthia A. Johnson (D-Detroit) introduced House Bill 4192 and HB 4193 to help clean up neighborhoods and protect the public health by enhancing the penalty for those who engage in illegal dumping practices. Illegal dumping, which occurs when contractors and developers leave waste and refuse in neighborhoods and other areas without permission, has become a growing problem within the city of Detroit and across Michigan.

“For too long, contractors and developers have come into our communities with the express purpose to better them, but instead have disrespected our residents by treating our neighborhoods as trash cans,” Johnson said. “Not only does the amount and type of trash pose a significant health danger to community members, but it sends the message that our neighborhoods are dumping grounds. That couldn’t be further from the truth, and it’s time to put a stop to this.”

House Bill’s 4192 and 4193 will maintain the current misdemeanor of 90-days or a $500 fine penalty for illegal dumping, but will enhance the penalty for illegal dumping over five cubic yards to a one-year misdemeanor or $2,500 fine. The bill will also create a five-year felony penalty or $7,500 fine for a second offense. The bill was referred to the House Judiciary committee.