Need to get rid of some unwanted clothes and shoes? Some newly installed collection boxes that have popped in Echo Park encourage passersby to drop off those dated clothes instead of throwing them away. But while the green-and-white USAgain boxes may encourage recycling, the metal bins set up on sidewalks are probably illegal, according to Department of Public Works.
Several of the collection bins, which popped up earlier this month on or near Sunset Boulevard, are blocking public sidewalks and appear to have been installed without necessary city review and required permits. “The boxes are illegal and don’t have permits,” said Cora Jackson-Fossett with Public Works. ” Investigators are being sent out to take appropriate action” against what the department describes as an “illegal encroachment.”
The Eastsider has contacted USAgain to get more details on the collection bins.
USAgain, a for-profit company, has attracted attention in the past in the wake of complaints from Goodwill and other nonprofits that say USAgain has siphoned of clothes and donations of other items that may have benefited community causes. As a result, the state passed a law requiring that the collection bins inform consumers whether they are donating clothes and items to a nonprofit or for-profit form.
Jackson-Fossett said residents can report illegal encroachments and other sidewalk obstructions by either calling 311 or submitting an online service request form.