'Fixed fines for fly tipping a move in right direction' - Herts landowners welcome government commitment on tougher line
PUBLISHED: 09:03 08 January 2016 | UPDATED: 09:03 08 January 2016
Landowners and businesses involved in the rural economy have welcomed a government vow that a manifesto pledge to give local authorities the power to issue fixed-penalty fines to fly-tippers will be honoured.
Ministers also say that they are looking at increasing the fines which can be levied against tippers after reports that the problem has been increasing in recent years.
A Freedom of Information request has revealed a total of 529,462 incidents across more than 200 local authority areas in the financial year 2014–15, which has edged up from 527,777 in the year before.
CLA East regional director Ben Underwood said: “Fly-tipping is a serious issue for landowners across the whole of the eastern region. It blights the countryside and we have called for culprits to be dealt with more robustly for years.
“We welcome the move to allow councils to fine those caught fly-tipping or littering, as this is another step towards a position of zero tolerance on these offences.”
Mr Underwood said he also agreed with the government’s assessment of the role local authorities needed to play in the fight against fly-tipping.
“There is a recommendation for local councils to consider their own policies, such as charging for items to be taken in at waste recycling centres and the adequacy of the provision of these centres,” he said.
“I wholeheartedly agree with this; there are a multitude of differing factors contributing to the recent rise in fly-tipping, but the number and location of publicly accessible waste sites, their opening times, and what they charge is going to have a fair degree of influence on an individual’s decision to fly-tip or not.
“The report also says that current enforcement practice among local councils varies greatly and we must strive to get some real consistency on approach in order to ensure that we do not create fly-tipping hot-spots.
“Regulations brought into force this year allow enforcement authorities to seize vehicles for a range of offences, including fly-tipping.
“We need these penalties to be rigorously enforced across the eastern region in order to send a message that this anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated.”