Trash issue on St. John piles up

Andrew Penn has been helping keep St. John clean for more than 20 years. But he said he’s reaching a breaking point. With more garbage than they can move and not being paid well.

“It’s a labor of love,” Penn said.

His company Penn’s Trucking Corporation along with about four other workers help maintain the four roadside bin sites in St. John. Pine Peace, Great Cruz Bay, Gifft Hill and Coral Bay. But the amount of trash is getting out of hand.

“People are still bringing their construction debris to the bin sites which is only supposed to be household garbage but everything comes here and it’s not monitored,” Penn added.

In a statement from the Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority, they tell CBS USVI:

“Trash Collection on the island of St. John has been delayed due to the lack of trash haulers willing to conduct business with the authority. We recently experienced a delay with barge service due to non-payment to one of the major barge companies.”

The authority added that they moved forward since collecting trashed from the sties and has started working with a St. Thomas company to clean the bin site perimeters.

Penn said he’s payed the barge companies and said he and his team just want to be compensated for their time.

He wants a plan in place for waste management to be funded. If not he fears what’s in the future for St. John.

“A lot of people will just be frustrated still. We can go on strike, we’ve never gone on strike, we never strike, I am too a dear to my island and we get up and we grind and we wait.”

The Authority asks to report any illegal dumping to 844-962-8784.