Almost 1,600 Fixed Penalty Notices Issued in Ards and North Down in the year past.
Ards and North Down Borough Council’s Neighbourhood Environment Team issued almost 1,600 fixed penalty notices during the 2019-20 financial year, an increase of more than 30 per cent over 2018 figures and a massive increase of almost 100 per cent over the previous three-year average.
The rise in successful detections of those breaking the law is thanks to the introduction of a new enforcement team who were employed at the start of 2019. This additional manpower has resulted in more fines being issued for a variety of offences such as littering, dog fouling and straying, as well as fly-tipping.
The Mayor of Ards and North Down, Alderman Bill Keery, said: “The increase in detection is indicative of the Council’s determination to encourage everyone to dispose of their waste responsibly and clean up after their pets.
“We are all having to cope with unprecedented circumstances at the moment but that’s no excuse for leaving litter behind. It’s detrimental to the environment and the Council has to clean up afterwards, which ultimately costs the ratepayers money.”
“We are encouraging all residents and anyone who visits Ards and North Down to abide by the letter of the law. It’s better for the environment and it makes our borough a better place to live.”
Neighbourhood Environment Officers are carrying out their regular duties during the pandemic but have been tasked to pay particular attention to littering, anti-social behaviour and fly-tipping.
“Officers work from early in the morning until late at night and Fixed Penalty Notices cost £60 if paid within 14 days. This rises to £80 after 14 days and offenders are summoned to court if they don’t pay within 28 days.
“Last year, one offender was required to pay more than £600 after a court appearance for what would otherwise have been a £60 fixed penalty. This comprised of a £75 fine for littering, £125 for failing to provide details, plus an additional £400 for legal fees, offenders levy and other costs.”
For more information, visit: ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk