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Environmental officers dish out 650 fines to littering residents

James Bagley. Local Democracy Reporter

New data reveals nearly 650 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) have been issued to rule-breakers by the Royal Borough’s specialist enforcement service since October 5.

In a breakdown of offences table due to be presented to councillors at a communities overview and scrutiny panel on Tuesday, it shows how many FPNs were issued by the borough’s new environmental enforcement agency – District Enforcement.

The service kicked in on October 5 after the Royal Borough saw fly-tipping from April 2019 to April 2020 surge by 79 per cent against the council’s performance target.

Since the contract became active, 649 FPNs have been issued and 476 of those were for people littering their cigarette butts.

Sixty-eight offenders were fined for littering their rolled up cigarettes and six people have been fined for dumping their black bags domestically.

Officers distributed 25 FPNs to fly-tippers with 15 being business-related and 10 being domestic.

The report shows 29 businesses in the borough failed to uphold their duty of care – which means they either didn’t manage to dispose of their commercial waste or recycling properly, have not had the correct paperwork, or do not have a registered waste carrier or aren’t registered to carry their own waste.

So far, only one dog fouling fine has been issued by District Enforcement since October 5.

If someone is caught littering, dog fouling, or dumping black bags, they can be charged £100 – which can be reduced to £75 if paid within 14 days.

Rule-breakers caught fly-tipping can be issued a £400 fine where repeat offenders of blatant fly-tipping could face prosecution as well as a maximum FPN of £50,000.

The District Enforcement service is cost-neutral to the council – which means they don’t charge a fee as their income is generated from the payment of FPNs.

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