An advertising campaign online and in local newspapers will help to raise awareness among local residents of the impending introduction of Fixed Penalty Notice fines for anti-social behaviour. Epping Forest District Council plans to introduce the notices at the end of November.
Small scale anti-social behaviour can be difficult and frustrating to deal with says Councillor Mary Sartin, Environment Portfolio Holder. At the moment, the only method we have of tackling issues such as littering, fly-tipping, graffiti, abandoned vehicles, noise nuisance and similar problems is through the courts. But from 29 November 2010, the Council will have the ability to issue fixed penalty notices.
People committing these offences will find themselves liable for fines ranging from £50 up to £300. Anyone who feels they have been unfairly treated can still opt to go to court where their case can be judged by a magistrate in the same way as the current system. However, fixed penalty notices should speed up the process and cut the bureaucracy. We hope that once the small minority of people who commit the majority of these offences start to get the message through their wallets, overall instances of anti-social behaviour will fall.
We are giving everyone plenty of advance warning. We started to tell people about the introduction of the notices back in August. Information is posted on the council website. The next stage will be an advertising campaign in the local press and community websites in October. The scheme will be launched officially in November but we wont issue any fines for the first few weeks. Instead people will be given a warning letter telling them what will happen if they continue to cause mess or nuisance.
Councillor Mrs Sartin rejects claims the council is using ‘Big Brother’ tactics. She said The only people standing to lose from Fixed Penalties Notices will be those who mar our district through their own careless or thoughtless behaviour. For the vast majority of law abiding citizens who take pride in the cleanliness and appearance of our district, these notices should come as a welcome development.
Fixed Penalty Notices will only be issued by uniformed council officers who will never ask for cash on the spot. The Fixed Penalty Notice will give details of how and where to pay.
Councillor Sartin added: We are turning the tables on the graffiti artists, litter louts and the like. Epping Forest District Council spends thousands of pounds of Council Tax payers’ money every year cleaning up after people who should know better.
The full list of penalties for offences is as follows (discount level in brackets):
- Litter – £75 / (£50)
- Abandoned vehicle – £200 / (£120)
- Nuisance parking – £100 / (£60)
- Dog fouling – £50 / (No discount)
- Graffiti & flyposting – £75 / (£50)
- Street litter control – £100 / (£60)
- Unauthorised leaflet distribution – £75 / (£50)
- Failure to produce waste transfer notice – £300 / (£180)
- Failure to produce waste carriers papers – £300 / (No discount)
- Waste receptacles – £100 / (£60)
- Noise – £100 / (£60)
- Failure to nominate key holder in designated alarm areas – £75 / (£50)
Trackback from your site.