WESTCHESTER SQUARE - The Graffiti-Free NYC truck rolled into Westchester Square Wednesday morning and set out on a mission to remove dozens of illegal spray-painted items, known as ?tags,? throughout the business district.

The clean-up operation comes at the request of local entrepreneurs and residents who are tired of scribbles covering their homes and stores.

The beginning of the graffiti-free initiative also coincides with a broader effort to revitalize the area through improvements to local infrastructure, economic development and the overall beautification of Westchester Square.

The graffiti removal service is offered free of charge to property owners who signed waivers allowing city employees to access their property.

Local business owners say they were forced to wash graffiti off for years. Now, they hope the city initiative will open a new, clean page in the history of the neighborhood.

?Defacing the community is not something we?re going to allow,? says merchant Anthony Pisacano. ?It?s a quality of life issue.?

Members of the Graffiti-Free NYC team urge residents who spot graffiti in their neighborhood to call 311.