Volunteers fight back against graffiti in South Bay - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Volunteers fight back against graffiti in South Bay

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A group of volunteers is tackling graffiti in Chula Vista after budget cuts forced the city to abandon the fight. 

The volunteer group is made up of a family of five. The group recruits other volunteers and encourages members of the community to step up and remove graffiti where the city can't. 

"I was done complaining. It came time that I was tired of being a complainer," said Tino Martinez, President of the Southwest Chula Vista Civic Association

Tino, a resident of Chula Vista for 37 years, also started the "Adopt-A-Wall" group to clean up graffiti around his city. 

"It's the love and my love for the community," he said. 

In 2011, the City of Chula Vista cut major funding for the graffiti abatement program. Only one person is funded to clean up the tagging and only on public property.

"At this point it seems like I have more guns than soldiers, so I need volunteers out there," said Martinez. 

Tino got tired of seeing the wall in front of the fire station on the corner of 4th and Oxford tagged.

He tackled 30 walls in three months. Either someone complains to him, or if he sees vulgar words or names, he grabs paint. 

He said the city supplies five gallons of basic paint colors as well as rollers. 

Recently, a local Home Depot donated $100. 

Despite the amount of graffiti, Tino is painting a better picture of his community. 

"I am not overwhelmed. I am encouraged," he said. 

"Adopt-A-Wall" does not paint over art or murals and checks with the owner of the property before cleaning it up. They also report the graffiti to law enforcement. 

To report graffiti on public property CLICK HERE

To report graffiti on private property to "Adopt-A-Wall" contact swChulaVista@gmail.com or follow them on Twitter @swChulaVista or by phone at (619) 292-8420.



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