CHICAGO (CBS) — A South Side pastor who says “cleanliness is next to Godliness” had a pile of garbage dumped right next to his church. It’s been there for months, and he couldn’t get the city to remove it.
Bishop WJ Richardson said God’s Way Apostolic Church has been at 74th and Ashland for 34 years.
Richardson said the church tried to be a good neighbor, offering Sunday dinners open to anyone, school supply giveaways and funerals for nonmembers who need a church.
“This is God’s house,” he said.
The small, tidy, well-maintained church sits next to a pile of garbage.
“It’s really an eyesore. It’s really sickening,” he said.
Over nearly two months Richardson said he has called the city’s 311 service number five times asking that the city remove the large pile of garbage behind an abandoned building next door to the church.
“They would say they’d look into it and give me a reference number,” he said.
But Richardson said nothing has been done so far.
The pile is still there with multiple garbage bags and even toilets.
He said it’s a recurring problem. Someone fly dumps there three or four times a year. But this is the longest he has waited for service.
“It is very disrespectful,” he said.
Fly dumping is against the law. Fines start at $1,500, but it has been no deterrent.
“I would like to have it removed ASAP,” Richardson said.
After CBS 2’s interview Monday Chicago Streets and Sanitation went to the location and removed the mess.
A city spokeswoman said the work was always on the schedule.
The city is now considering surveillance cameras for the alley.