Police will be stricter on cleanup starting mid-September

Police say the grace period ends September 11


LUKE HOLLISTER | The Daily Evergreen

Trash litters the sidewalks and yards of Greek houses and live outs during the first week of class.

FORREST HOLT, Evergreen news editor

Some College Hill residents will have to be more diligent about cleaning up after themselves, if they want to avoid fines.

On Sept. 11, the Pullman Police Department will begin handing out tickets ranging from $100 to $500 for residents taking part in “nuisance violations” in the part of town that hosts most WSU buildings and students.

Pullman Police Operations Cmdr. Chris Tennant said the department is waiting to issue infractions until Sept. 11 to give residents time to educate themselves on the regulations, which include punishments for disorderly conduct, outdoor urination and defecation, traffic blockage, unlawfully loud noise and visible garbage and junk.

“The [College Hill] community is tired of continual problems,” Tennant said. “They have asked us to take a stricter approach.”

A lot of the issues on the list go hand-in-hand, he said. In many cases when people host big yard parties, the music is loud, there are parking issues, trash ends up outside and there are not enough bathrooms, which leads to outdoor urination and defecation.

College Hill residents can still throw big parties and will not have a problem with the police department, Tennant said, as long as they follow the nuisance rules and clean up before morning comes.

Tennant said the department has been tracking warnings and residents with prior warnings should expect a ticket on the morning of Sept, 11 if they have not cleaned up. Pullman PD’s nighttime officers know where the big parties are, he said, so they will know where to look the following morning.

University President Kirk Schulz and ASWSU President Jordan Frost have called for a strengthening in the relationship between WSU and the Pullman community. They have both signaled that College Hill is a crucial element of this relationship.

As head of the student government, Frost wanted to make sure students were aware of the coming changes before they happened and he wanted them to think of the effort positively.

“I really hope people see this as an opportunity to make where they live better,” he said.

Frost said education is the first step to improving a community, and College Hill residents should think of the time between now and Sept. 11 as the period of education. He also wanted to make clear the efforts were not intended to target the Greek community.

Frost is optimistic, saying he does not expect a lot of tickets because residents will anticipate the stricter enforcement, with the help of the awareness campaign.

“A key area of improvement identified within this initiative is the cleanliness and appearance of College Hill,” read an ASWSU Facebook post announcing the project. “There will be warnings until Sept. 11, and one additional warning before an infraction is issued.”

Whether or not students are aware come September, Pullman PD plans to have its night time officers communicate potential problem areas to the officers taking over in the morning.

“We will be banging on the door at 7:30 in the morning,” Tennant said. “If you don’t want to get woken up, clean up before bed.”