William Eichler 27 November 2018

Whitehall warns against using fly-tipping fines to raise revenue

The Government has warned financially-strained local authorities against using fly-tipping penalties as a means to raise revenue.

Parliament is considering new legislation to give councils the power to fine householders £400 for failing to give their waste to a licensed carrier.

The aim of the financial penalty is to help local authorities crack down on fly-tipping.

In 2016-17, clearing up after fly-tippers cost councils in England £57.7m. Around two thirds of this waste contained household waste.

New guidance, issued yesterday, urges local authorities to use the new powers ‘proportionately’ and not as a means to raise revenue.

It says householders should not be fined for minor breaches and stresses that consideration should be given if the individual is a vulnerable person.

The new penalties, which are expected to come into force early next year, will provide an alternative to putting fly-tipping cases through the courts which can be a lengthy and costly process.

‘Fly-tipping is an unacceptable blight on our landscapes. Many people do not realise they have a legal duty to look up waste carriers and we want councils to step up and inform their residents,’ said environment minister Thérèse Coffey.

‘We must all take responsibility and make sure our waste does not end up in the hands of criminals who will wilfully dump it and these new powers will help us to crack down on rogue waste carriers.’

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