MANITOWOC - Piles of trash sat on a Manitowoc curb on Tuesday, and neighbors want it gone.
Tenants moved out of 316 N. 6th St. earlier this month and left a lot behind. Other people are now stopping to take in the sight and smell of the garbage or sort through it.
Steven Metzger lives two houses down from the mess.
"It stinks, it's a nuisance, and it needs to be cleaned up," he said.
Metzger said he has voiced concerns about the problem.
"It started about three weeks ago, when the trash started piling, and we've contacted the mayor, the aldermen, the building inspector, numerous times, myself and the other neighbors, and nothing has been done," he said.
Richard Schwarz, the city of Manitowoc Building Inspector, told Metzger that he would look into the problem. The inspector said he looked at the property two weeks ago.
"There wasn't this garbage here but there were other items in the yard that was technically in violation of municipal code," Schwarz said.
The property was cleaned up, but more garbage piled up. Schwarz said he was told last Wednesday by a resident of the house that the trash would be gone that day. The main tenant, Julie Medinger, and all other occupants of the property, have since moved elsewhere in the county.
Another neighbor told FOX 11 that before the former tenant moved out, she purchased $40 worth of orange garbage tags from Pozorski Hauling and Recycling. Some of the tags are still visible on items on the curb.
The landlord and neighbors told FOX 11 that the former tenant said she paid to remove the garbage. However, Pozorski told FOX 11 that their records show the former tenant is not a customer of their pick-up service. People can purchase garbage tags, but they have to contact Pozorski to become a pick-up customer.
There are two dumpsters on the property, one of which is from Pozorski. They said the tenant paid for the dumpster to be emptied once. It was emptied and then the tenants filled it up again. They have not paid for it to be emptied again.
Now the curb on 6th Street sits covered in Christmas decorations, DVDs, televisions and food containers.
"Basically (the former tenant) lied to me," Schwarz said. "I tried to work with them. If they don't want to work, then they get a citation."
On Tuesday, Medinger was cited $101.60. Schwarz said that citation could be transferred to the landlord, Debra Mrozinsky, per municipal code.
Mrozinsky said she's tried to call Medinger several times, but hasn't gotten a response.
"It is our responsibility now, I guess, because we own the property, but I'm going to see what legal ways that we can take care of it," Mrozinsky said.
Schwarz added, "If it's not removed in a couple of days, then I'll order a hauler to come, and it's going to get charged to the landlord anyway."
FOX 11's calls to Medinger were not returned. In the meantime, the nuisance remains for neighbors like Metzger.
"We can't go outside because of the odor," he said. "I mean it's so strong, and it's hard to walk by with all of the garbage on the sidewalk."
Schwarz couldn't recall any other citations issued to the property in the past. The inspector blamed staff reductions for the delay in issuing the citation.
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