BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The saying one person’s trash is another’s treasure hits home for business owners in downtown Bakersfield.

City councilman Andrae Gonzales proposed an ordinance to keep dumpsters secure in hopes to keep trash off the streets.

Dumpsters may not seem like a gold mine to most people but to the homeless, these waste receptacles have odds and ends that they’re out on the hunt for.

It’s called a dumpster lock and it works just like how it sounds, lock up dumpsters from people trying to get into where they don’t belong.

“If there was an easy solution we would have done it already,” councilman Andrae Gonzales said during the last city council meeting. “None of us are happy that so many people are unhoused on our streets.”

There’s been a history of homeless people dumpster diving looking for bottles, cans and other items they can sell for a quick buck but there are also some who vandalize the dumpsters too.

KC Steakhouse in Downtown Bakersfield had its dumpster set on fire by vandals a couple of years ago. Michelle Pelton the owner of the restaurant said they’ve had locks on the dumpsters but it still doesn’t work. People will keep cutting the locks or bend back to the plastic lid to get in.

“They do not work,” Pelton said. “They put the locks on, they cut them off. You can go on the side and lift them up there ain’t no purpose in them. I don’t know what else to do about it.”

Bonnie’s Best Cafe has its dumpster locked up too but it uses a different kind of lock and it works.

“The lock is called a gravity lock,” Lupe Alvarez a food prep worker at Bonnie’s Best Cafe said. “So once a dumpster truck gets here and lifts it upside down it automatically unlocks it so when it gets put back it automatically relocks it so no one can get trash from there.”

Pelton with KC Steakhouse said the proposal is good but the locks aren’t the issue.

“I don’t believe it’s going to do anything,” Pelton said. “A possible fix is maybe put the pyros in jail again.”

Business owners are required to pay for their dumpsters to be fixed or replaced when damaged. The dumpsters go for about $1,200.