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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 24/05/2004
Appendix B



Summary & Purpose
This report summarises the information and evidence submitted to the Committee at the special Select Committee mode meeting held on 29th March 2004 and the additional written submissions received. On the basis of that information and other background material reported to earlier meetings, it is intended that the Committee will consider the outcomes of the review of fly tipping, draw conclusions and make recommendations for inclusion in its final report to the Executive on the issue.

Quality of Life Implications
Natural Resource Use
Pollution Prevention and Control
Biodiversity and Nature
Local Environment
Social Inclusion
Safe Communities
Local Economy
Natural
Resource Use
Pollution
Prevention and Control
Biodiversity
and Nature
Local
Environment
Social
Inclusion
Safe, Healthy
and Active
Communities
Local
Economy
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive
Positive



The purpose of undertaking a review of fly tipping is to identify ways of dealing with this problem, conducting a review will not of itself provide positive implications for the quality of life issues set out above. However, it is intended that the outcomes of the review would have a positive impact across all of the quality of life indicators.

E-Government implications:

The final report will take into account how E-Government initiatives could contribute to addressing the problem of fly tipping.

Resource and legal implications:

There are no direct resource and legal implications associated with this report other than the officer time involved in the review. The cost and any legal implications that emerge from the review will depend on the Committee’s findings and recommendations which will be included in its final report on fly tipping.
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Background

1. The Committee’s review of fly tipping has been informed by submissions from various organisations including Parish and Town Councils, the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, the Police, the National Farmers Union, Hampshire County Council, Surrey County Council, the National Trust, Environment Campaigns (En Cam) and Waverley officers. In addition, several members of the public submitted their comments and views on the issue.

2. Unfortunately the Environment Agency, who have the prime responsibility for the issue nationally and for local enforcement particularly, were unable to attend and present their views to the meeting of the Committee on 29th March 2004. A written submission is currently awaited and will be circulated to all members of the Committee when received.

3. The existing legal framework surrounding fly tipping was set out in the report to the Committee at its meeting on 20th January 2004.

4. A copy of the consultation document ‘Fly Tipping Strategy’ issued by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) was also sent to all members of the Committee.

5. Details of the submissions made to the Committee at its meeting on 29th March 2004 are attached as Annexe 1 to this report.

Key themes

6. It is clear from the information collected that currently Waverley’s own fly tipping problem, when compared with other Councils, is relatively modest and that the existing procedures for dealing with fly tipping, which are the Council’s direct responsibility, appear sound, timely and cost effective.

7. However, there is a growing perception that the problem of fly tipping is widespread and evidence from private landowners within the Waverley area indicates a much greater problem, albeit one which is outside of Waverley’s direct responsibility. It could therefore be considered that the Council uses its wider community role as a means of influencing and addressing the fly tipping problem for the whole of Waverley with partner and other agencies.

8. Regulations and directives governing the disposal of waste, as well as future directives, are likely to exacerbate the problem of fly tipping. The impact of Landfill Tax, the EU Recycling Directive on the disposal of fridges and freezers as well as the EU Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment regulations covering most domestic electrical goods such as televisions and computers have, or are likely to have, an impact on fly tipping. As a result of the introduction of the above regulations and directives, disposal authorities will have to provide licensed centres for disposal of materials for which charges may be levied on the public and businesses which would cover the increased disposal costs that will arise from the more environmentally acceptable but more expensive methods of disposal required.

Issues and actions for consideration

9. As a result of the evidence obtained from the review, some common threads have emerged, which could form the basis of the Committee’s findings and conclusions and which in turn would form the basis of proposed recommendations to the Executive. The Committee may therefore wish to consider or add to the following list of issues and potential actions identified below:

I. On Waverley-owned land, known fly tipping sites should be examined to see what measures could be taken to make it more physically difficult i.e ‘block it’ or ‘lock it’. II. Problem areas should have warning signs put up stating that the site might be subject to CCTV surveillance and a telephone/e-mail contact address to report fly tippers.

III. Mobile CCTV equipment should be acquired or hired and used across the borough and also made available to landowners.

IV. Work with the Police in surveillance activities and the support offered in use of their CCTV, Automatic Number Plate Recognition systems and covert observations as well as assistance with prosecutions.

V. Environment Agency to be encouraged to prosecute offenders and to publicise successful prosecutions as a deterrent.

VI. Free telephone Hotline and on-line reporting facility should be introduced and publicised to enable more effective reporting of incidents.

VII. Preventative and co-ordinated publicity produced with partners to inform the public on facilities available for disposing of materials such as Civic Amenity sites, what constitutes commercial and non commercial waste, the special collection service and general information on fly tipping hazards.

VIII. Publicity to raise public awareness of the risk of fly tipping, associated with work carried out by disreputable cold callers and cowboy contractors.

IX. Continue discretionary policy of collecting fly tipped material from farm gates etc provided this is not taken advantage of.

X. Consider introducing an annual ‘free’ large item special collection service while recognising the cost implications of such an approach.

XI. Work with Surrey County Council (SCC) to identify scope for a ‘commercial’ disposal site within Waverley.

XII. As an interim measure, encourage SCC to experiment at an existing Civic Amenity site with extended hours of operation specifically for trade/commercial waste.

XIII. Encourage SCC to extend Summer opening hours of Civic Amenity sites.

XIV. Increase the profile of ‘signal crimes' – fly tipping, graffiti, abandoned vehicles etc within Community Strategy, working with partner organisations (including landowners) drawing together work that is currently being undertaken.

XV. Consider inspection arrangements as part of new waste contract and, as a minimum, retain the current level of resource.

XVI. Apply Fixed Penalty Fines where evidence can be obtained of fly tippers.

10. The issue suggested in one individual submission of including transponders i.e. small electronic signalling devices within material being disposed of by contractors on behalf of members of the public has been discounted at this time because of the practical difficulties of encouraging the public to adopt/purchase and use such devices.

Recommendation

The Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee is recommended to consider the outcomes of the review of fly tipping, draw conclusions and make appropriate recommendations to the Executive on the issue.

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Background Papers (DoPD)

There are no background papers (as defined by Section 100D(5) of the Local Government Act 1972) relating to this report.
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CONTACT OFFICER:

Name: Roger Standing Telephone: 01483 523221






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ANNEXE 1
Summary of the submissions received at the meeting on 29th March

The table below sets out the key issues highlighted by the organisations submitting evidence to the Committee at its meeting on 29th March 2003:-

ORGANISATIONPRINCIPAL ISSUES
Waverley Borough Council
Martin Shorten
Trend on amount of fly tipping (for which WBC is responsible) has not dramatically increased year on year over last tree years
Average clear up rate 2.5 days from receiving report – 315 reports in previous year - 12,000 contractor cost
Govt estimate nationally cost 100m per year
Protocol with Environment Agency (EA) whereby WBC reports large incidents to EA – WBC still clears
WBC responsibility is for Council owned land and highways only
Arkeco collect fly tipped rubbish and deliver to Slyfield
Joint funded (Pavilion/SCC/WBC) provision at Sandy Hill of man and van to remove fly tipped material and street cleaning duties
WBC fly tip definition is dumped rubbish of more than 1 sack or equivalent but nationally specified definition will be forming part of the ‘Flycapture‘ System
WBC don’t have private landowner statistics
Types of fly tipped material – most commonly garden waste, trees, rubble, tyres, wheels, engines
Hotspots – lay-bys, through routes and where it’s easy to park up and leave quickly
Not in the past been a high priority – not out of control
Cost not just monetary but environmental impact e.g. water pollution from dumped oil etc
Now seen as an indicator of deprivation – a crime unpunished
Linked to crime and disorder
Need to consider impact of waste reduction strategy levels of fly tipping – Guildford BC experience negligible affect
Changes included in draft DEFRA National Strategy
Covert surveillance camera has been ordered for dog fouling enforcement – but could also be used for this purpose
Suggested a range of other possible improvements
EN CAMS
Jenni Cresswell
One bag of rubbish or many tonnes represent incidents of fly tipping
Abandoned vehicles act as stores for fly tipped material – leads to risk of vandalism fire etc
Block and lock to protect vulnerable areas – gating, fencing, earth buns
Experience that’s working elsewhere – CCTV, Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN)
Estimated 75% of FPNs are paid
National Hotline in use for six week period – results mixed
Buckinghamshire statistics 7,500 tonnes of fly tipped material in 2002 cost 500,000
Publicity campaigns help
National data collection exercise now introduced – all LAs have to provide information
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead
Nigel Davis
No excess waste policy did not lead to fly tipping increase – publicity was very important
RBWM - 500 incidents of fly tipping per annum
Always involve EA in prosecutions – 3 last year
EA threshold for involvement likely to change under DEFRA strategy to equivalent of couple of skips - therefore greater onus on LAs to act
LA’s have powers to force landowners to remove fly tipped rubbish but RBWM don’t use this power unless it was deliberate
RBWM developing a strategy to include closing access ways, installing post etc but conflict with Rights of Way
CCTV needs to be monitored to be effective
Publicity in local press used to warn about fly tipping risk of using cold callers for tree work, green waste removal etc
Us of warning signs at vulnerable sites
Check shops and businesses for waste transfer documentation
Employ 3 Inspectors (Street Care Officers) and contractor provides 3 rapid response teams
Collect reported fly tipped material within 24 hours – if hazardous material takes longer
Fly tipped waste is checked for evidence of offender
RBWM use fixed penalty tickets when evidence discovered - 40 issued most pay 50 fine - no one taken to court yet – often the person who arranged for the collection rather than the cowboy contractor who dumps the rubbish
Work with parishes to collect fly tipped rubbish
RBWM have a fly tipping Hotline – not much used
National Union of Farmers
Angus Stovold
Huge problem throughout the county for landowners
Survey indicated cost per farmer of between 500 - 1,000 per annum to deal with the problem (250 farmers in Waverley)
Cost of landfill tax falls on landowners to dispose of fly tips – no longer able to burn or bury it
Example provided of failure of EA to prosecute an offender reported for dumping asbestos
Four ways to deal with the problem
o Leave it
o Put in a skip or with household waste
o Push onto the public highway
o Burn or bury (illegal)
Solutions proposed – vigorous prosecution of offenders, partnership/share cost with WBC for provision of a skip, a countryside – county wide response
Issue of lack of rural policing
Try to raise funding for a Rural Police Co-ordinator
CCTV at vulnerable sites might help
Surrey County Council
Richard Parkinson
SCC are waste disposal authority
Responsible also for clearing fly tipped rubbish from SCC land
As planning authority grant permission for waste disposal facilities
2,000 tonnes of fly tipped waste disposed of in 2002/03 (out of overall total of 3million tonnes of waste disposed of by Surrey)
Disposal costs increasing Landfill Tax will rise to 35 per annum
Limited number of Landfill sites licensed to dispose of segregated materials such as VDU screens, televisions – only 11 in the country
Surrey is reliant on landfill for waste disposal
Asbestos is disposed of in either Kent or Rugby
No commercial waste transfer facilities in Waverley – nearest site is Slyfield
Surrey have 3 commercial waste facilities (including Slyfield) which are heavily over used
Other authorities tend to have commercially operated sites
Obtaining planning permission for waste facilities is a significant problem
SCC would consider using Civic Amenity sites as Commercial Waste facilities but practical difficulties would include the need for a weighbridge and enough land
SCC would consider using Civic Amenity sites as Commercial Waste facilities
SITA funding can no longer be used to fund waste projects
Views from Waverley with regard to fly tipping would be useful as part of Waste Local Plan process




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