Water quality consultation

Written on . Posted in Business, Commercial properties, Community, Consultation, Environmental health, Local business, Media, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Your area

Are you on a private water supply? DEFRA have launched a 6 week consultation on updates to the public and private drinking water regulations. This consultation will be of interest to those concerned with public and/or private supplies of drinking water.

Drinking Water Directive

The changes will bring the regulations in line with the Drinking Water Directive. The Drinking Water Directive was updated to reflect World Health Organisation principles for the risk based sampling and analysis of drinking water supply.

The consultation closes 24 October 2017.

Consultation

Your rubbish, your responsibility

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Commercial properties, Community, Councillors, Environmental health, Epping, Local business, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Prosecutions, Recycling and waste, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Fly-tipping in Essex is draining more than £1 million of taxpayers’ money each year.

#CrimeNotToCare

Partnership working

This week, Love Essex, a partnership of councils, businesses and environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, is launching its #CrimeNotToCare campaign to inform residents they could unwittingly end up with a criminal record and face an unlimited fine, if a rogue trader dumps their waste illegally.

”Your rubbish is your responsibility”

Epping Forest District Council’s Environment Portfolio Holder, Councillor Will Breare-Hall said: “We need the public to understand their rubbish is their responsibility and they must do the right thing with it. Giving it to a man with a van who offers to get rid of it cheaply could prove costly for people and result in them getting a criminal record.”

Incidents on the rise

In the Epping Forest district there were 2,384  incidents in 2016 to 2017, a significant rise from the previous year’s figures of 1,944. The number of prosecutions of residents where fly-tipped waste has been traced back to them is also on the rise.

Successful prosecutions

A man was recently fined £461 and ordered to pay £758 prosecution costs after pleading guilty to failing his ‘duty of care’, at Chelmsford Magistrates Court. The Loughton resident had allowed a man who knocked at his door to take 40 black sacks away for £70 cash, without checking he was authorised to transport the waste – rules he was unaware of.

The rubbish was then fly-tipped in a garage area in Loughton and traced back to the resident.

”Important campaign for our country”

Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton added: “#CrimeNotToCare is an important campaign for our country and we are delighted that Epping Forest District Council as part of Love Essex, is partnering with us.

“There are almost a million fly-tipping incidents in England every year and cleaning it all up costs us £50million a year. It blights communities and our countryside and is a menace.”

Seek advice

Ensure you don’t fall foul of the law, visit www.recycleforessex.com/crimenottocare for advice.

Top tips to dispose of waste correctly

  1. If you use a trader to remove your waste ask to see their waste carrier registration number issued by the Environment Agency. It is illegal for them to take your waste if they don’t have a permit. Check their credentials and vehicle details here
  2. Make sure you get a receipt or transfer notice before your waste is taken away
  3. Don’t be afraid to ask where your waste is going and request paperwork that shows where it will be disposed. A legitimate waste carrier will not object to this questioning
  4. Protect yourself by being careful with your waste. Never leave rubbish, such as old washing machines or scrap metal on your drive or in the street as it could end up in the wrong hands. You can donate working items to reuse organisations or charity shops

Report fly-tipping

Decisions from Plans West 16 August 2017

Written on . Posted in Building control, Business, Community, Councillors, Democracy, Local plan / planning our future, Meetings, Our countryside, Out and about, Private housing, Regulations, Residents, Uncategorized, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Planning application decisions from Area Planning Sub-Committee West meeting on Wednesday 17 August 2017.

Watch the webcast

Decisions

  1. EPF/1129/17 – 25 Shooters Drive, Nazeing, Essex, EN9 2QA
    Permission granted
  2. EPF/1322/17 – Redwood, Epping Road, Epping Upland, Essex, CM16 6PU
    Permission granted
  3. EPF/1418/17 – Cressage – now known as Lady Oak House, Low Hill Road, Roydon, Essex, CM19 5JN
    Permission granted
  4. EPF/1436/17 – The Estate Office, Hayleys Manor, Upland Road, Epping, Essex, CM16 6PQ
    Permission granted

Planning application search

Do you know a cheat in your street?

Written on . Posted in Business, Business rates, Community, Council tax, Housing, Media, Out and about, Prosecutions, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

“If you know or suspect someone is committing fraud you should report them straight away” urges Finance Portfolio Holder Councillor Gagan Mohindra.

Fraud affects everyone. Money stolen by housing tenancy fraud, council tax fraud or business rates fraud is depriving our public services of the vital resources they need.”

Know a cheat in your street?

Report someone you think is committing fraud

Don’t let them get away with it. You can report it anonymously. You don’t have to give your name or contact details unless you want to.

Fraudsters are cheating us all

Housing tenancy fraud – someone who has committed a social housing fraud by

  • illegally sub-letting
  • not living in the property and leaving it empty
  • making a fraudulent Right to Buy application
  • taking (or making) a payment for a mutual exchange
  • living in a property after the tenant has died, where they had no right to succeed
  • giving false or misleading information to get the tenancy

Council Tax fraud – someone who gets a Council Tax discount by falsely

  • stating the property is empty
  • claiming they live alone
  • claiming they are a student
  • claiming Council Tax Support falsely by doing undeclared work or having capital/property in excess of the limit

Business rates fraud – a person or business liable for Business Rates who falsely

  • claims an exemption or relief they are not entitled to

Not a victimless crime

Cllr Mohindra said: “Fraud is not a victimless crime. Don’t think that reporting benefit fraud is wrong or underhand. If a fraudster commits fraud in the Epping Forest district we will use the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 to seize and confiscate their assets.”

We need your help

“We constantly look for fraud but no matter how hard we try, we cannot do it alone – we need your help” said Councillor Mohindra.

“Please tell us if you suspect someone is committing fraud by filling in our online form or by calling our fraud investigation team on 01992 564444.”

Council 27 July 2017

Written on . Posted in Business, Chairman, Community, Councillors, Crime and safety, Democracy, Grants, Leader, Local business, Media, Meetings, Our attractions, Out and about, Prosecutions, Regulations, Residents, Sports centres and pools, Supporting business, Your area, Your community, Your council

In a sombre council meeting on 27 July 2017 tributes were paid to current Councillor Gary Waller and 3 former councillors who passed away recently.

Gary Waller 1945-2017

Council remembers Gary Waller

Council Chairman David Stallan and Council Leader Chris Whitbread led emotional tributes to Councillor Gary Waller who passed away just a few days earlier.

Gary Waller was one of the most active and senior members of Epping Forest District Council, holding one of the most responsible cabinet roles as Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder. So sudden was his passing that his reports still featured on the council agenda.

A former MP with a wealth of experience, good humour, and friends across the council, councillors offered their heartfelt condolences to all he knew and loved.

Ian Abbey, Stan Goodwin and Keith Wright

In a sombre council meeting, councillors also fondly remembered former councillors Ian Abbey, Stan Goodwin and Keith Wright who all passed away in recent weeks. Councillor Stallan thanked all those who spoke so movingly in memory of ‘4 great councillors’.

Good progress reported to councillors

Council Leader Chris Whitbread and fellow members of the cabinet reported on a range of recent successes.

Reports included

  • Epping Forest Shopping Park
  • Tourism website and conference
  • Fly tipping prosecutions
  • Progress on a new leisure centre for Waltham Abbey following the letting of a new leisure centre management contract with Places for People
  • MiLife mental health and awareness programme for school children
  • Grant aid to 11 local organisations totalling £29,667
  • Updating information on the draft Local Plan
  • Council CCTV cameras helping the police

Council housing safety

Following the Grenfell Tower fire, Housing Portfolio Holder, Councillor Syd Stavrou also provided councillors with extensive information and reassurance on the safety of local council housing.

There are no high-rise council properties in Epping Forest and very few with any form of cladding (checks suggest this cladding is safe). All council properties are low enough to be reached by Essex Fire and Rescue vehicle platforms. Councillors were invited to attend future meetings to satisfy themselves of the fire safety measures and procedures in place.

Annual reports

Annual reports of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Audit and Governance Committee were also noted along with the council’s anti-fraud and corruption policy.

Influence change in housing policy

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Community, Consultation, Democracy, Epping, Housing, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our countryside, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Become a member of the Epping Forest District Council Tenants and Leaseholders Panel and influence change in your local area!

Tenant & leaseholders panel p1

Click on an image below to begin slideshow

Influence housing decisions

If you would like to have a say in how your housing service is run, or would like an opportunity to influence housing related decisions before policies are made, then why not join the Tenants and Leaseholders Panel.

Resident led group

Members of the panel are Epping Forest District Council tenants or leaseholders. The group meets several times a year, has an elected chair, the Housing Portfolio Holder (the lead councillor for housing) and council officers attend each meeting.

Fair representation

Epping Forest District Council Housing Portfolio Holder, Councillor Syd Stavrou said: ”We would like to increase our panel’s membership, in the hope that we give our tenants and leaseholders fair representation and a chance to have their say, before changes or new policies are introduced.”

Comment on services

”The panel are able to comment on our housing services and on our performance too. We are looking for people who would be willing to attend evening meetings dedicated to improving decisions that affect tenants and leaseholders across the district. Please contact us if you’re interested in getting involved!”

Contact

Epping market for young entrepreneurs

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Community, Doing business with the council, Epping, Jobs, Local business, Loughton, Ongar, Our activities, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Visit Epping market on Saturday 8 July 2017 and show your support for the districts youngest entrepreneurs, who will be competing for the title of ‘Young Trader of the Year’ and a £250 investment in their business.

Youth Council at Young Traders Market

First steps in business

Young people aged between 14 – 24 that have designed, produced or sourced products or services for sale, will set up their stalls on Saturday and take their first steps in business.

Youth Council

Our Epping Forest Youth Councillors will be there on Saturday with a tombola stall, raising money for The Children’s Society.

Trophy & investment

The youngsters will be competing for a trophy and £250 investment in their business, as well as prizes for two runner up winners.

Established entrepreneur judges

Feedback and mentoring will be provided by established entrepreneurs, who will form the panel of judges.

Talented young people

Epping Forest District Council are supporting Epping Town Partnership in presenting this initiative, to showcase the entrepreneurial spirit and talent of our local young people.

Further information

Council property fire safety measures

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your environment

Following the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower in the London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in June 2017, Epping Forest District Council would like to reassure and inform our residents about our approach to fire safety in council properties across the Epping Forest district.

Quick facts

  • Epping Forest District Council owns no high-rise blocks of flats over 5 storeys
  • In the event of a fire, our flats are of a sufficient height that can be accessed by the Fire Service
  • Hard-wired linked smoke and heat detectors have been installed in all council properties
  • Regular fire safety risk assessments are carried out for all communal areas in council properties
  • There are very few flats across the district with external cladding. Those that do, do not have the same cladding as used on the Grenfell Tower
  • Cladding materials are being checked as a precaution
  • 30-minute fire resistant front doors have been installed on all council flats in blocks

”Safety of our tenants is our priority”

Epping Forest District Council’s Housing Portfolio Holder, Councillor Syd Stavrou has visited some of our larger blocks of council flats to see the approach taken to fire safety. Following a visit, she said: ”We were all shocked and saddened to see the devastating events unfolding at Grenfell Tower earlier this month. The council was already in the process of reviewing fire safety measures and will continue to evaluate our approach. The safety of our tenants is our priority. I will be undertaking more visits to blocks of flats across the district, to see for myself the new installations and measures we have in place.”

Thank you

She continued: ”I hope that the information provided will reassure our tenants that we are doing all we can to ensure their safety, whilst living in our properties. I would also like to thank our tenants for their co-operation during any disruption whilst safety checks and works have been carried out. I would also like to ask for their ongoing support in keeping any communal areas clear, to ensure our properties remain as safe as possible.”

Never complacent

The council is never complacent about fire safety and it is hoped that this information gives some reassurance.

Contact us

If for some reason you have not had hard wired smoke and heat detectors or 30 minute fire resistant doors installed, please contact us as a matter of urgency

This information does not cover buildings in the district that are not in the council’s ownership or that are not its responsibility. If you have concerns and your building is privately owned, please contact your landlord or leaseholder.

Further information

Loughton Luxe licence reviewed

Written on . Posted in Business, Community, Crime and safety, Emergencies, Licensing, Loughton, Media, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

Following a number of violent incidents linked to Luxe in Loughton, Essex Police asked Epping Forest District Council for a full review of their licence after it was temporarily suspended on 5 May 2017.

Suspended for 3 months

Councillors on the licensing sub-committee met on 30 May 2017 and agreed that all licensable activities should be suspended for the next 3 months.

Reopening as a Gastro Pub

The licence holders of Luxe in Loughton informed the committee they would be reopening the venue as a Gastro Pub and renaming it the Royal Standard. Following the suspension, licencing hours would be reduced to close at 11pm on Sundays to Thursdays, and a midnight close on Fridays and Saturdays.

The licence holders agreed to hold regular community liaison committees with local residents should they need to report any concerns about the venue.

Planning application validation list consultation

Written on . Posted in Building control, Business, Commercial properties, Community, Consultation, Local business, Media, Out and about, Planning, Private housing, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Tell us what you think about our revised planning application local validation list.

We are consulting on revisions to the validation list of local information requirements. This now includes the addition of a guidance note on the submission of viability and financial appraisals for affordable housing.

Planning application local validation list consultation

What is the local validation list?

The local validation list identifies information required to register, assess and validate a planning application. We are asking any person or organization with an interest in or involvement with planning applications submitted to Epping Forest District Council to respond.

The previous validation list was produced in 2015 and we are required to review it every 2 years.

Consultation documents

How to respond

The consultation is open for 6 weeks from 21 April until 30 June 2017 – send us your comments by