Council seeks public help to Tidy Fenland

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A new campaign to clamp down on issues including littering, dog fouling and fly-tipping will be launched in Fenland tomorrow.

Residents in the district are being encouraged to help identify problem areas as part of the Tidy Fenland initiative, which coincides with the introduction of new powers to tackle dog fouling.

A similar initiative established six years ago saw a 58 per cent cut in the amount of litter being dropped in known troublespots.

More than 130 businesses also signed up to manage environmental issues in their area and officials are hoping for a similar impact this time around.

Peter Murphy, Fenland council’s cabinet member for environment, said: “The cleansing of Fenland costs taxpayers £1,000 a day.

“That is a considerable sum when we know that eight out of 10 people never drop litter and the majority of dog owners are responsible and pick up after their pets.

“The majority of residents are therefore paying the cost for the unacceptable behaviour of the minority.

“The campaign is being launched in response to public calls for more enforcement to tackle such environmental crimes.

“It also shows our determination to stamp out those crimes and take action against those whose selfishness spoils other people’s enjoyment of our district.”

The authority says intelligence gathered from the public will be used to set up enforcement patrols, with offenders getting on the spot fines.

A private contractor will also be brought in to support workers in the council’s Street Scene service.

The initiative comes as new dog control public space protection orders, which contain new restrictions on where dogs can be walked in some parts of the district, come into force.

People who breach the new notices will be given a £75 fixed penalty notice, reduced to £65 if paid within 21 days, or taken to court.

A series of events are being planned to promote the new scheme and encourage residents to have their say on issues in their area.

Anyone who wishes to raise an issue can tweet to @FenlandCouncil, contact the authority via its Facebook page or call 01354 654321.