Agenda item

Draft Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy

To advise the Panel about a draft Partnership Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy and ask for feedback (report of the Assistant Director - Regulatory enclosed).

 

Minutes:

Consideration was given to the report of the Assistant Director - Regulatory which advised the Panel about a draft Partnership Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy and requested feedback.

 

The Assistant Director – Regulatory introduced the report by outlining the following background to the strategy:

  • a sustained increase in litter and fly-tipping had been experienced on both a local and national level and the draft strategy outlined a proposed approach of engagement and enforcement to address these issues throughout the South and East Lincolnshire Councils Partnership (S&ELCP);
  • a distinction was made between the aim of the draft Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy and that of the infrastructure waste requirements reflected in the Lincolnshire Waste Partnership which related to services delivered by Lincolnshire County Council and district council waste collection services;
  • a litter and fly-tipping strategy had not previously existed within any of the three sovereign councils of the S&ELCP and therefore the implementation of a new partnership strategy would help to steer the priorities set out within each of the authorities’ Corporate Plans.

 

  • Appendix A set out The Draft Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy.

 

  • Appendix B was a presentation which outlined the salient points of the strategy.

 

Members considered the report and presentation and made the following comments:

 

  • Members welcomed the document and stated that monitoring processes, milestones and timelines needed to be included in the strategy. 
    • The Assistant Director - Regulatory stated that:
      • approval of the strategy was expected by February 2023; the interim period enabled the strategy to be presented for consultation/scrutiny across the partnership before being presented to respective Executive Board/Cabinets for approval;
      • a Portfolio Holder briefing note had been issued regarding the procurement of a joint environmental crime enforcement contract. The procurement process for the contract was complete and it was anticipated that the preferred bidder would be approved and in place by February 2023, as the selected contractor needed eight weeks to mobilise. 
      • an Action Plan and Communications Plan would be presented alongside the strategy for approval by Cabinet and a suite of performance indicators would be implemented to monitor performance. The communications campaign would be broad, accessible in multiple languages and circulated through appropriate mechanisms.
  • Members stated that the communication strategy needed to set out residents’ responsibilities regarding:
    • the illegal fly-tipping of privately collected waste; and
    • adherence to new legislation regarding the separation and collection of different forms of waste in order to avoid contamination.
  • The Chairman requested the strategy be reviewed by the Policy Development Panel in November 2023.

 

  • Members noted the importance of the strategy and the impact of environmental crime upon the district. It was hoped that the enforcement contract would facilitate a higher number of prosecutions for persistent offenders and when this had occurred, that details be widely publicised. Financial penalties were supported by members to motivate behavioural changes and serve as a deterrent to fly-tipping.
    • The Assistant Director – Regulatory responded that the environmental crime contract enabled the utilisation of patrols and surveillance which would assist with the identification of offenders. A positive impact had been experienced at Boston Borough Council where a significant decrease in fly-tipping had been experienced in areas where overt surveillance was employed.

 

  • Members asked whether the strategy aimed to address the early presentation of domestic waste.
    • The Assistant Director – Regulatory stated that early presentation of waste would be addressed through education and enforcement; implementation processes would be decided at a local level however education and enforcement action could be deployed through the environmental crime contract.

 

  • Members noted the wide variance in fly-tipping data across the partnership.
    • The Assistant Director – Regulatory responded that:
      • the reasons for the variance in fly-tipping data across the partnership were complex: remote locations were prone to fly-tipping incidents and Boston had seen rapid increases whereas fewer reports from the East Lindsey district were attributed to the employment of street cleaners in coastal tourist destinations where swift action had been taken; and
      • intelligence was deemed important; the environmental crime contract included surveillance capabilities.

 

  • Members enquired about how elected members would engage with the strategy. Reports of fly-tipping were often made to members directly and the outcome of reported incidents needed to be relayed to ward members/residents.
    • The Assistant Director – Regulatory responded that
      • local intelligence from residents, ward members and Parish Councils was important and would inform the most effective deployment of resources;
      • the environmental crime contract included a performance reporting requirement, and a key objective was that comprehensive data, at ward level, could be shared with members; and
      • members were encouraged to suggest requirements regarding the regularity and format of the requested feedback.
  • Members requested regular updates relating to the number, location and status of fly-tipping reports on their wards, from the reporting stage through to prosecution. Members referred to the weekly reports received regarding Planning Applications and suggested a similar reporting approach be taken. Members agreed that the inclusion of a regular feedback mechanism be recommended to Cabinet.

 

  • Members suggested a proactive approach to engagement and education of the strategy was required. Engagement with schools was supported.

 

AGREED:

 

a)    That following consideration of the Draft Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy, that the comments of the Panel be noted;

 

b)    That the request for regular feedback to members in connection with reported fly-tipping incidents be recommended to Cabinet; and

 

c)     That the Draft Litter and Fly-Tipping Engagement and Enforcement Strategy come forward to the Policy Development Panel for first review in November 2023.

 

Supporting documents: