Council warning: Keep it clean this Spring or face a fine

People who fly-tip, litter and don’t pick up after their dogs are in the City Council’s sights as a new campaign is launched to urge everyone to play their part in helping to keep Nottingham clean.

Nine out of ten people in Nottingham say that they believe those living in the city have a responsibility to keep Nottingham clean by picking up after their dogs and disposing of rubbish properly.

And cleanliness of the city centre and neighbourhoods is a massive priority for Nottingham residents. A recent survey showed that for 33% of people in the city, littering is a big concern– with them rating it as the worst form of anti-social behaviour, while 29% of people were very concerned about dog poo.

Nottingham remains among the cleanest cities in the UK, with the City Council spending £7million a year on street cleaning and its clean crews in action 20 hours a day, seven days a week. But the council wants levels of cleanliness to improve further, with the help of local people.

In 2016, council crews picked up 14,232 dog poos, 5,920 fly-tips and over 6,205 tonnes of rubbish. The cost of picking up after irresponsible dog owners was over £70,000, while clearing up close to 6,000 illegal fly-tips cost taxpayers over £300,000.

Nottingham is one of a handful of councils in the UK that offer a completely free collection of large household waste items. In 2016, 60,000 items were collected, the most common were broken washing machines, TVs, fridges, mattresses and sofas.

Everyone can help keep the city clean – by reporting it when they spot dog fouling, a litter hotspot or a fly-tip. Clean teams use the reports to get out and fix the problem – and almost always sort it within 48 hours. The faster council teams know, the quicker issues can be fixed. Reports can be made by calling 0115 915 2000 or reporting it online (with the option to upload a picture).

Nottingham City Council works closely with Community Protection officers (CPOs) to fine people who break the rules. In 2016, 3,005 people were fined £75 for littering in Nottingham – 1,466 of those were caught littering from their car.

And a new rule means that CPOs will now fine dog owners £70 on the spot if they don’t have any dog poo bags with them while walking their dog.

The vast majority of people in the city take pride in their environment, and want to help stop those who ruin their neighbourhoods for everyone. So, the campaign will also highlight what everyone else can do to help Nottingham City Council’s Community Protection teams to bring offenders to justice:

  • Dog fouling – if there is a problem with persistent dog fouling in a neighbourhood, report it to us on 0115 915 2020. The more information about the irresponsible owner, including a description and the time and location they walk their dog, the better
  • Fly-tips – any information about the origin of fly-tips, or people or businesses that are fly-tipping, can be reported on 0115 915 2020. The council’s Community Protection team will investigate and prosecute where possible.

As part of the campaign, the council will also be naming those who have been prosecuted for enviro-crimes including fly-tipping, dog fouling and littering. Offenders are prosecuted only when they fail to pay their fines, forcing the council to take them to court. In 2016, more than 30 people were found guilty in court, and fined up to £989.

One resident of Clifton was fined £710 for failing to clean up after his dog, while others were fined for littering items including cigarette butts and chewing gum.

Councillor Nicola Heaton, Portfolio Holder for Community Services said: “I’m incredibly proud of our beautiful city and feel passionately that we need to keep it as clean as possible – and most people in Nottingham feel the same way. No one wants to live in a rubbish tip – littering, dog fouling and fly-tipping are illegal and unacceptable. That’s why we take these offences seriously, fining over 3,000 people last year.

“I want to encourage everyone to think about what they can do to improve their local area – if everyone could pick even one piece of litter and put it in the bin, think of the difference we could make in our streets and parks.”

Pete Mitchell, Chief Community Protection Officer for Nottingham said: “We know the vast majority of people are law-abiding and sensible when it comes to our environment.

“However, for the small minority that fail to clean up after their dog, drop litter or dump rubbish, we will use all of our available enforcement powers. Our Community Protection officers carry out plain clothes operations at peak dog fouling times, and our teams investigate fly-tips for evidence that will lead us to the offenders.”

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