Councilman Daniel Dromm’s office has received numerous complaints from neighbors of the coffee shop, located at 37th Avenue and 79th Street, about the mountains of garbage that are left out on the curb for longer than a day.
Dromm and residents held a protest last Friday morning in front of Starbucks.
“We’re here to say to say enough is enough,” the councilman said.
Neighbors have called 311 on several occasions, but the city has not issued fines because, Dromm and neighbors contend, Starbucks dumps its garbage in an inconspicuous location.
Instead of placing it on the curb in front of the store on 37th Avenue, a commercial road, Starbucks puts it on 79th Street on a residential block. Furthermore, Dromm said the trash often sits there from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. and when it finally gets picked up, the trucks wake people up.
Dromm said he visited the store, gave them his card and asked for a manager to call him. They never did, so he called and spoke to the manager, who said the district manager would contact him. However, that never took place either.
Dromm then sent Starbucks a letter notifying them of their non-compliance with city administrative code that states businesses must place their garbage on the curb at designated times.
“Unfortunately, Starbucks has refused to cooperate,” Dromm said. “Starbucks is in regular and flagrant violation of city laws. This is unacceptable and must be corrected immediately.”
Len Maniace, president of the Jackson Heights Beautification Committee, said Starbucks’ behavior is deeply disturbing.
“This is really sad,” he said. “They are a big corporation, the least they could do is be a good responsible corporate citizen.”
Elisa Carlucci, a 79th Street resident, said she and her neighbors are growing extremely frustrated with this situation.
“It’s a real quality of life issue,” Carlucci said. “We have reached out to all parties involved and have been completely ignored. City agencies, although acting in good faith, have been unable to have any impact because they’re searching the wrong area in front of the business’s storefront.”