Let's face it: the City of Amarillo has a trash problem. Trash is piled up against dumpsters. Concrete, broken furniture, and mattresses line the alleys in many of Amarillo's neighborhoods.
The City of Amarillo also has a municipal court problem. As outlined by Jeff Blackburn last year, too many people are being jailed for unpaid municipal court tickets. The City ignores the 1971 case Tate v. Short and continues to send people to jail in an effort to generate revenue for shortfall in the City budget.
Realizing that there are two major problems, I have an idea on how we can solve both the ticketing issue and the trash problem.
Let's offer a program for those with unpaid tickets to dispose of mattresses and other junk from the alleys. For those who help dispose of garbage from the alleys, tickets will be forgiven or majorly cut. This will enable us to fix a key issue on both ends.
This will, by no means, solve either issue. The municipal court still needs serious reforms and the trash system needs overhauled. But this could put us on a key step in making real progress on issues that continue to face the City of Amarillo.
-Tom Warren II, Publisher