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224 Exeter 'litter louts' fined in August

But nearly half don't pay up!

Nearly half the fines dished out by a private contractor to people dropping litter or not picking up after their dogs haven't been paid.

224 culprits have been fined £100 by enforcement company 3GS in August alone. The penalty can be reduced to £75 for littering or £60 for dog fouling, if paid within 14 days. 

But just 129 had been paid when the report of Cllr David Harvey, Lead Councillor for Place, was published ahead of next week's council meeting. However, if they don't cough up within four week, a summons to the magistrates’ court awaits.

Councillor Harvey said: “There had been an excellent success so far. Although the primary focus was on litter issues, they are able to deal with other environmental enforcement such as fly posting.

“During August, 224 fixed penalty notices were issued to individuals. This had mainly been in the city centre area whilst the team has undergone training, but penalties have been issued in a number of more outlying areas such as St David’s Station and Cowick Street.”

Two people did runners before tickets could be issued, but 3GS's policy is not to chase after them.

The move to contract 3GS followed calls from the public asking the City Council to take more action, and ‘government cuts to funding’ resulting in ‘any means necessary’ approach to provide services. Dropping general litter, cigarettes, spitting, food waste and chewing gum are offences that are covered under the scheme.

It has attracted some controversy. The last remaining independent shop in Exeter High Street, which has announced it is to closed after decades in business, blames in part the "litter police".

This new initiative costs the city council nothing, with 3GS funding the cost of enforcement officers through revenue generated from the fines. Should any money return to the Council it will be spent on keeping front line services such as street cleaning.

 

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