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Reward people for reporting illegal dumping – councillor

AN incentive scheme to encourage those who witness the “scourge of illegal dumping” to come forward and report it to the authorities has been proposed by an Ennis councillor.
Councillor Pat Daly believes that an award scheme which recognises those who come forward publicly should be put in place, and he has received the backing of his council colleagues.
Speaking at a recent meeting of the Ennis Municipal District he urged that the Council “consider finding ways to incentivise civic-minded members of the public to report incidences of illegal dumping in the Ennis municipal district area and, where possible, make evidence available”.
The councillor commented, “There are two types of people who see illegal dumping and want to report it. One is someone who gives the information and wants to stay anonymous, but the other is a person that has no problem reporting and is prepared to give evidence.
“This is a suggestion, but some award scheme should be given out, whether it is civic recognition or a certificate. And somebody like that who goes to court, their costs should be refunded as they might have had to take a day off work.”
He stated that illegal dumping is happening too much at the moment around the town.
“It’s very, very serious. I’ve seen it first hand at Ballybeg when I came out from my walk and there was a carpet there. There were three or four cars there, surely somebody saw it.”
He expressed the hope that people who are afraid to report illegal dumping might be encouraged by the proposed incentive scheme.
Backing the motion, Councillor Ann Norton commented, “I don’t know a month that goes by where there isn’t a motion around illegal dumping and coming up with ways to try and prevent it.”
She stated that the council’s environmental section, alongside the public and volunteers do an “amazing job” in trying to tackle illegal dumping.
“There are a lot of people out there that don’t want to get involved in going down the line of producing evidence or wanting to go to court, people have busy lives. But unfortunately we need to come up with mechanisms that may prevent people from illegal dumping.”
She added, “It is so frustrating when you see the amount of illegal dumping. I really do believe people should take more pride in their home and area. And respect the volunteers that are out picking up their rubbish.
“It’s so unacceptable that volunteers have to pick up rubbish belonging to others. We talk about this on a monthly basis, but we need to come up with initiatives to try and prevent this from happening.”
Councillor Mark Nestor also voiced his support saying, “Any new initiative to target the scourge of illegal dumping would be very much welcome”.
Responding to the motion, Brendan Flynn, Senior Executive Officer, stated, “There are a number of ways in which the public can report incidences of illegal dumping to Clare County Council.
“The Environment Section has an Anti-Litter Hotline 1800 606 706. The public can notify the Environment Section via the fix your street web page http://www.fixyourstreet.ie/reports/submit.
“Alternatively the public can contact the Environment Section directly via our online query page https://www.clarecoco.ie/your-council/contact-the-council/online-query/default.aspx
“If evidence of illegal dumping is found, we will take appropriate enforcement action. In addition to public reporting, the Environment Section has a very active Waste Enforcement team comprising an Executive Engineer, Waste Enforcement Officer and four Wardens who carry our daily patrols of the County.
“We also operate five Civic Amenity sites where the public can bring items of waste for a nominal charge and certain items for free.”

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