Walker said the city has bent over backward to accommodate the railroad but it's time the company live up to its obligations as required of any property owner.
"Enough is enough," Walker said. "They have been totally unresponsive to our requests."
Mike Furtney, San Francisco-based public relations regional director for Union Pacific, said the company just removed about 30 truckloads of material in December, including tires, sofas and water heaters.
"I think the December clean-up shows we certainly care about the conditions down there," he said. "That sort of thing is not something that we can do as often as the city would probably like us to do."
Furtney said the railroad has budgetary constraints when it comes to such issues but will continue to monitor the situation and put more money into cleaning such areas if warranted. He said the company is aware of the situation and will weigh it against similar needs in other areas.
The 2-year-old city nuisance abatement program is aimed at preventing potential fire hazards and clearing the city of eyesores, including piles of trash, abandoned vehicles and so forth on private property. Fire hazards include an over-accumulation of brush or trash.
Under the program, property owners found by FPS inspectors to be in violation of city fire codes are sent notices by mail to immediately clean their properties. If FPS receives no response within 30 days, a second notice is sent to the property owner requiring the property be cleaned within 10 days. If the second notice is not complied with, FPS will have the site cleaned and bill the owner for those costs.
An El Centro fire marshal provides written authority from the city for FPS cleanup crews to enter the properties in question and remove the offending materials. Law enforcement officers accompany FPS employees.
Fire Prevention Services focuses on homes, businesses and alleyways. Property owners can check FPS's Web site, www.fireprevention.net, to see examples of what violates typical fire codes. Examples include excess debris, overgrown brush and tree limbs that overhang roofs, including visual nuisances that can be seen from the street.
Those with concerns about their yards or a neighbor's yard can call FPS locally at 370-0566.
>> Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.