Local authorities given new on-the-spot powers to fight fly-tipping

From today, councils in England and Wales will be able to fight fly-tipping by fining offenders up to £400 on the spot.

The fixed-penalty notices will be issued by council enforcement officials for dumping of small-scale items such as broken furniture, old televisions and mattresses.

According to a 2015 FOI request, fly-tipping incidents are currently at 529,000 a year, an increase of 16% from 2012, and cost £16.2m to clean up. In Hull, for example, more than 4,500 reports of fly-tipping have been made in the past year and almost 1,200 enforcement notices issued.

Cllr Martin Tett, spokesperson for the environment at the LGA, said: “Litter and fly-tipping is environmental vandalism – it’s unpleasant, unnecessary and unacceptable.”

He added that the cost was taking money away from other key demands on councils such as social care and road repairs.

Cllr Tett called the new powers “a big step in the right direction”, but said that the government also needed to make changes to the legal system to make it easier to prosecute offenders.

These powers could include making the system faster, allowing local authorities to recoup all costs, and passing on some of the costs of clean-up to manufacturers of products such as mattresses and chewing gum.

Allison Ogden-Newton, chief executive of charity Keep Britain Tidy, said: “We are delighted that the government has listened to Keep Britain Tidy and to the local authorities who have been calling for this change to the law.

“However, more work is needed if we are to get a grip on this problem, in particular looking at prevention of fly-tipping before it occurs.”

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(Image c. David Brossard)


PS Hare   11/05/2016 at 11:58

On the face of it the more powers sound good - but - one never sees these people who dump. Is the use of cameras and what they capture permitted a) to actually use (no bleating about human rights) and b) what they capture - can this be used as 'evidence'. If so this would help greatly aid prosecution. yrs PS Hare

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