Higher fines on way for litter louts
LITTER louts face higher on-the-spot fines.
The current fine of €150 is being increased -- but no decision has yet been made by how much, Environment Minister Phil Hogan disclosed yesterday.
And he hinted that the maximum €3,000 penalty on conviction in the courts for a littering offence is also about to be raised.
Mr Hogan said the current level of litter fines was inadequate to deal with the scourge of fly-tipping , which was causing huge problems for rural communities.
The minister said he had not decided on the size of the increase in the fines, but this would be contained in new anti-litter legislation due shortly.
"We need more punishments and more on-the-spot fines," he said.
Speaking at the Tidy Towns ceremony in the Helix at Dublin City University yesterday, Mr Hogan said he was giving €750,000 to local authorities to provide CCTV monitoring of litter blackspots.
"I am absolutely determined to stamp out the causes of litter."
Mr Hogan hit out at the minority of people who persisted in antisocial behaviour, such as carelessly littering, and deliberately dumping.
"Whether it's dropping a cigarette butt, not taking litter home from a day at the beach, or deliberately fly-tipping, all are causes of litter and all call for an appropriate response," he added.
The minister said fly-tipping was being carried out on a large extent, and he wanted to give local authorities extra resources to carry out extensive enforcement to try and stamp out the problem.