MEMPHIS, Tenn.– Memphis city leaders are discussing ways to tackle the problem of blight and illegal dumping including a new task force that many hope will help clean up our communities.

In many cases old tires, mattresses, overgrown grass, and abandoned houses are trashing neighborhoods. Illegal dumping and blight is a city-wide problem that some city leaders are trying to tackle.

“This is a resolution to form a blight and illegal dumping task force. Memphians look to us as representatives to help mitigate illegal dumping and blight,” said councilwoman Rhonda Logan.

City Council members met to discuss creating a Blight and Illegal Dumping Task Force. The task force would analyze data and look at what practices really work in an effort to find a solution.

“We need a structured meeting of those with institutional and community knowledge to come together and analyze data and trends, look at what’s working in Memphis and what’s not working, and look at what’s working in other cities,” Logan said.

Environmental Court Judge Patrick Dandridge appeared before council members to talk about how his court targets troubled properties and their owners.

The council wanted answers about whether violators are actually being punished?

“I’m looking forward to see who’s receiving the highest type of punishment and this is what the citizens are saying nothing is being done to these individuals,” said Councilwoman Cheyenne Johnson.

“If you’re in violation of my court order, willful violation and you’ve been assigned a public defender, and you’re going to be sent to jail. That’s period,” said Environmental Court Judge Patrick Dandridge.

Leaders are cracking down on the trashy problem as the city looks for answers.

“What do we actually have to do in order to clean the city up? That’s our mission. Clean this city up and that’s what we’re hearing by any means necessary,” Johnson said.

The Blight and Illegal Dumping Task Force will likely consist of 13 members, including code enforcement prosecutors and officers.