Council to CRACKDOWNon flytippers Daily Echo October 2nd.

Taxpayers foot £2m bill to clear up illegal dumping of waste material over past eight years

Councillor now proclaims the appointment of two salaried/pensioned environmental officers will save Southampton residents money.

The appointment of these fly-tipping czars will increase the council’s investigation abilities and, presumably by performance related results, significantly reduce the amount of fly tipping in the area.

A publicity campaign costing ££££’s will be directed to the doorsteps of law abiding citizens who dispose of their waste via the approved/legal methods.

Another councillor proclaims that prosecution of fly tipping offenders is the worst possible outcome.

The first question that arises is, why has it taken Southampton City Council eight years to realise fly tipping has taken £2m from its spending budget?

Next, will the two environmental officers be employed proactively, work unsociable hours, patrol known ‘hot spots’ work in partnership with other agencies, be trained to carry out covert surveillance [RIPA 2000] to reduce the current clear up costs to the council?

How much will the purchase and installation of covert CCTV equipment, by appointed contractors costs?

Will travellers who cause damage, camp illegally on council land, dump their waste before leaving, be prosecuted using the same powers granted to SCC?

Will the environmental officers work 9-5 Monday to Friday, from an office in the civic centre; reactive only, to reports of illegal fly tipping, with no chance of catching the offenders?

I envisage an indebted student, dumping some Ikea packaging, next to their overflowing wheelie bin, being fined £50k, pursued by High Court enforcement officers and/or sent to prison.

Has SCC thought this through, looked at the modus operandi to target prolific serial fly tippers or, just go for the easy option of prosecuting the tax payer who leaves bagged waste outside their property for the ‘austerity reduction’ fortnightly refuse collection service?

I guess the crackdown results will reveal if the council policy works or not in due course.

The implementation costs must be similar to the anti litter patrol officers now employed in the high street [QE2 mile] alongside the mobile litter collection.

Staff pushing their wheeled bins.

How many fines have been issued for litter to justify the salaried/pension costs of more auxiliary staff?

David Lange