By Grainne Cuffe, Local Democracy Reporter
Lewisham council is planning to crack down on fly-tipping, littering, and urinating outside in a bid to raise money and keep streets clean.
The plan forms part of the council’s draft budget cuts, the second round of which were published this week, and aims to save £100,000 next year.
As part of the proposal, extra enforcement officers are set to patrol the streets and slap offenders with fines of up to £400.
The focus will be on littering, including cigarette butts and chewing gum, allowing dog fouling, urinating in a public place, and fly-tipping.
According to documents on the draft budget cuts: “Despite efforts to keep the area clean and litter-free, it is an almost impossible, and costly, to change while some individuals continue to dump waste illegally and be generally irresponsible with their litter.
“The council needs to take a harder line with individuals and step up enforcement.
“The proposal is to supplement the environmental enforcement team with civil enforcement officers, appropriately trained to focus on on-street littering.”
The enforcement officers will be wearing uniforms and body cameras.
“The aim of the enforcement patrols is to target those who choose to ignore the littering laws, which the vast majority of our residents abide by,” according to the council.
Lewisham is planning significant changes to its environmental services in the coming years.
A £900,000 review of operations is set to include job losses and fewer street cleans.
The council is also developing a new waste strategy aimed at reduction, reuse, and recycling, with the hopes of cutting £250,000 from its budget in 2023/24.
One resident complained about piles of rubbish left in The Firs in Venner Road, Penge.
The above photographs were taken Monday, January 4.
The resident, who did not want to be named, said: “This is how we are treated here.
“This health and safety issue is common here. Furthermore, it seems beyond the powers that be to have a proper recycling scheme, i.e. no dedicated food waste so everything is just shoved in together.
“Clearly not enough adequate bins, poor signage and no sense of urgency to this clearly shocking scene, which happens frequently.”
A spokesman for Lewisham council said: “Our waste and recycling team have visited the site to empty the bins. The team continue to work hard across the borough to keep Lewisham’s streets clean, we encourage all residents to dispose of household waste responsibly and keep in mind collection days which can be found on our website.”
Pictured top: Piles of rubbish left in The Firs in Venner Road, Penge
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