Calls for 'night patrols' in Carlow to tackle littering and illegal dumping

One councillor called for 'double the number of environment enforcement officers'

Darren Hassett

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Darren Hassett

Email:

news@carlowlive.ie

Carlow Carlow Carlow

Rubbish that was collected after a serious bout of fly-tipping in Carlow recently (CREDIT: James Grogan)

Councillors have called for "night patrols" and extra enforcement staff in the local authority's environment section to tackle littering and illegal dumping across the county. 

The issue was raised at this month's meeting of Carlow County Council when Carlow's Draft Litter Management Plan 2018-2020 came before members prior to going out to public consultation. 

Cllr Fergal Browne said: "We do need night patrols. Out on the street, stopping people with dogs, checking they've got bags on them. We need action now and to take a tough line."

Cllr Will Paton called for "double the number of enforcement officers". 

Senior Engineer at the Council, Brian O'Donovan, told members that a €150 fine is "good value for money" for people who engage in illegal dumping or littering.

He added that the Council are taking as many prosecutions as they can and there is potential in the courts for a fine of up to €5,000.

Mobile CCTV cameras around the county have "yielded very good results" for the Council in bringing about successful prosecutions. 

The Council executive told members that night patrols "cost money" but Mr O'Donovan added that "night patrols are going to happen". 

Mr O'Donovan also said the local authority have plans to tackle the "man with the van" who is causing losts of problems. 

The Council intend on targeting the small percentage of people who they suspect do not comply with waste disposal laws. 

The issue was raised at this month's meeting with the agenda item to adopt the County of Carlow (Segregation, Storage and Presentation of Household and Commerical Waste) Bye-Laws 2018. 

Cllr Ken Murnane said the Council would be knocking on the doors of people "not on the system" or without a registered bin provider to query how they're waste is disposed of. 

Some councillors expressed concern over the local authority knocking on the doors of people asking them for receipts for their waste disposal. 

Cllr Arthur McDonald said he was concerned that if he had disposed of his waste properly - but was not in a position to provide a receipt - the Council could issue an on-the-spot fine.

But Mr O'Donovan said: "We know who we're targeting before we're knocking on doors and it's a small percentage of the population."

The bye-laws were voted on and adopted. Cllr Will Paton and Cllr John Cassin did not vote in favour for their adoption. 

The comments around the Litter Management Plan come as public consultation meetings will take place on the draft plan on: Tuesday, September 25 Council Chambers, Carlow County Council at 7-8pm. 

Another will be held on Wednesday September 26 at the Council Chambers, McGrath Hall, Muinebheag at 7-8pm. 

A copy of the draft plan is available for public inspection for a period of four weeks from September 11 to October 2 of this year during normal opening hours at the offices of Carlow County Council, Athy Road, Carlow or can be downloaded during this period from www.carlow.ie. 

Comments/observations with respect to the proposed plan should be made in writing to: Ms. Jannette O Brien, A/E.A.O, Environment Section, Carlow County Council, Athy Road, Carlow or email: environment@carlowcoco.ie

The closing date for submissions is 4pm on Friday October 12, 2018.

Both members and the Council at this month's meeting also praised the work of local volunteer, Eugene Walsh, for his efforts in cleaning up Carlow.