COVID-19 UPDATE | The City is coordinating closely with our public health officials at the Santa Cruz County Health Department to prevent the further spread COVID-19. In an effort to protect you and our community, changes and measures have been adopted in daily operations and activities. For further details please click here for the City’s Response to COVID-19

Public Works FAQs

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The Public Works Department receives phone calls on many subjects. Below are a few of the most common questions and their answers. To speak with someone in the department, please call 831-420-5160 during business hours: Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 12 noon, and 1 to 3:30 p.m.

Who is responsible for fixing my sidewalk?
The responsibility for the repair of sidewalks, curbs and gutters, belongs to the adjacent property owner pursuant to Municipal Code 15.20.210. Property Owner Responsibilities Brochure

What should I do if I am experiencing sewer problems?
Although there are many reasons for a sewer malfunction, if you advise the City that you are experiencing problems, they will investigate and ascertain whether or not it is related to the sewer main. If it is not a malfunction on the part of the City, the property owner is responsible for any problems from the lateral to the main.

How do I report a sewer spill?
Please report any spills or dumping incidents, whether accidental or intentional, to the Environmental Compliance Department at 831-420-6050. During non-business hours, please call 911 to report spills or illegal dumping. More information.

What does it mean if I need to get my sewer lateral inspected?
Your sewer lateral may need to be inspected for one of three reasons. Either:

1. A spill or overflow from your sewer lateral occurred
2. You are the owner of a Private Sewer system (e.g. a condominium complex) 
3. You are preparing to sell your property

More information for each of these situations can be found on our Sewer Lateral Information page

What are the requirements for washwater entering the municipal sewer?
The washwater entering the municipal sewer should not have fluorocarbons, sedimentation, oils, and have a moderate pH. Further details are listed under Local Limits in Ordinance 2010-20  which amends section 16.08.110 of the Santa Cruz Municipal Code.

What are the hours at the landfill? Resource Recovery Facility Map
The Resource Recovery Facility located at 605 Dimeo Lane, which intersects Highway 1 about 3 miles north of the City limits, is open Monday through Saturday 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and closed on Sundays, with the following exceptions: 
    Closed Thanksgiving Day 
    Closing at 12 noon on December 24 (Christmas Eve) 
    Closed all day December 25 (Christmas Day) 
    Closing at 12 noon on December 31 (New Year’s Eve) 
    Closed all day January 1 (New Year’s Day)

Can I take household hazardous waste to the landfill?
Yes. The new Household Hazardous Wastes drop-off site at the Santa Cruz Resource Recovery Facility on Dimeo Lane is now open. Residential household hazardous waste can be dropped off from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturdays at the Resource Recovery Facility on Dimeo Lane. Remember, household hazardous waste cannot be placed in your curbside carts.

Whom do I call if my garbage was not picked up on my regularly scheduled day?
Call Customer Service at 831-420-5220. They can also answer questions regarding renting dumpsters, special collection days, recycling, and general solid waste questions. 

Where can RV owners dump wastewater from their RV vehicles in Santa Cruz? RV owners may locate the most convenient RV waste dumping location by clicking here.

There is a dead animal on my property!
Public Works does not dispose of dead animals located on private property, nor small animals. For dead or injured cats, dogs, raccoons, skunks, opossums, etc., contact the County of Santa Cruz, Animal Services Authority at 831-454-7303. Public Works will only dispose of large animals (dead deer, cows, etc.), if they are located along City streets, or large marine mammals that have washed ashore within the City limits, provided, however, that they can be reached by heavy equipment.

Chinese Elm TreeCan I remove a tree from my property?
There are restrictions on some tree removals. All tree-related questions should be addressed to the Parks and Recreation Department at 831-420-5270.

There has been a car parked in my neighborhood for over two months without moving. Can you get it moved?
The City of Santa Cruz Police Department operates the abandoned vehicle program. Please call 831-420-5863.

Can you send someone to come out and clean up an illegal campsite that is located on public property adjacent to my home?
If the Campsite is located:

  • In any of the city’s 33 parks, 2,000 acres of open spaces or along the San Lorenzo River levee, please call the Parks and Recreation office at 420-5270.
  • Below Highway 1 by Felker Street or in any residential area please call the Police Department at 420-5800.

A  garbage truck hit my car! Whom should I talk to regarding the damage? For claims against the City for property or personal damage, please contact the office of the Risk Manager, at 831-420-5057 or

City Streetlight

My streetlight is out.
Let us know if it is a wooden or metal pole. If it is wooden, Pacific Gas & Electric recommends that you contact them at PG&E or call 800-743-5000. If it is metal, it belongs to the City (unless it is in the Carbonera area where almost all of the poles belong to PG&E). The City of Santa Cruz Public Works Department phone number is 420-5160 or you may use the online reporting form. In either case, before reporting the outage, check for a pole number (which is highly visible at about head height). Jot down the number so you will have it handy when you make the phone call. The pole number assists repair crews in locating the pole and identifying which type of lamp needs to be replaced.

How do I use a bicycle locker? 
Detailed information is available online at Downtown Bicycle Lockers. For more information regarding City of Santa Cruz bicycle parking programs call 831-420-5187 or email.



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