Council takes litter bugs to court
16 August 2016Five people have been ordered by Magistrates to pay fines ranging from £339 to £521 after being prosecuted for littering by Cheshire West and Chester Council.
The defendants were all initially issued with fixed penalty notices (FPNs) during anti-littering patrols across the borough.
The penalty is £50 if paid within 7 days, after which it rises to £75 and must be paid within 14 days. The five people prosecuted last week had refused to pay their penalty despite being given a number of opportunities to do so. Taking offenders to court for non-payment of an FPN is always the last resort.
On Thursday, 11 August Chester Magistrates’ Court imposed fines and costs of up to £521 per person, a considerably larger amount than the initial penalty.
As well as the environmental impact of making our streets look dirty and untidy, it costs the Council around £570,000 a year to clear litter in the Northwich, Ellesmere Port and Chester areas.
The Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, Councillor Karen Shore said: “Our Street Care Pledge sets out our commitment to maintain clean and tidy streets across the borough. Littering is always considered to be one of the most important issues to our residents. We had no option but to issue court proceedings against these people when they refused to pay their initial penalty.
“This follows on from a number of successful prosecutions last year. The message is simple - anyone caught dropping litter and who doesn’t pay their penalty will be taken to court and prosecuted.”