While Exeter mother Donna Challice appeared in court less than a month ago on six charges relating to her household waste, local authorities appear to be taking a harder line when dealing with their refuse collections.
The latest to provide new guidelines for its residents is Lancaster City Council (LCC), which, in an effort to clean up the west end of Morecambe is to start issuing Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs).
A LCC spokesman said: The Clean Neighbourhoods Act introduced a new power from 1 April 2006, so that authorised local authority employees can issue a FPN for failure to comply with specified collection arrangements for household, commercial and industrial waste.
This is when people are not really dumping rubbish, theyre just putting it out in the street after the collection or too far in advance of the collection, and this new offence can be given a FPN of £100.
The councils viewpoint was set out in a letter to residents warning any rubbish abandoned after collection day will be deemed illegally dumped and examined to find the source. Offenders will be prosecuted.
Its Crime and Grime Clean Sweep initiative will now take place in several grot spots around the district.
Commencing over a four week period, intelligence gathering will take place in the first phase. Then police, fire and rescue service officials, street wardens and LCC officers will undertake an Environmental Visual Audit to identify problem areas and gather intelligence for the second week of the programme which will deal with enforcement.