South Gloucestershire Council is consulting on proposals that would give authorised persons the power to challenge anyone in control of a dog to demonstrate that they have the means to clear up after the animal, even if it hasn’t defecated at that time.
It is also proposed to extend the land types on which people have to clear up after their dogs so that it applies to all land ‘open to the air’ to which the public have access to.
Currently, the council lacks the power to enforce against dog fouling on commons, woodland, farmland or heathland.
The proposals would be implemented using powers under Section 59 of the Anti-Social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014 to make a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in relation to dog fouling.
Breach of a PSPO is an offence, which can result in fine of up to £1,000 if convicted, however the council’s proposals recommend issuing a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100 (reduced to £75 for prompt payment) instead of prosecution.
In a further effort to reduce the amount of dog waste littering in South Gloucestershire and ensure that dog owners meet their responsibilities, the council is taking part in a national poster campaign.
A council spokesperson explained:
“Incidents of dog fouling usually increase as the darker nights draw in, and studies show that people are less likely to pick up after their dogs when they feel they aren’t being watched.”
“That’s why we are taking part in Keep Britain Tidy’s ‘We’re Watching You’ campaign, which features innovative, eye-catching, glow-in-the-dark posters to help to remind thoughtless dog owners that ‘we’re watching you’. The posters will be placed in known problem areas across South Gloucestershire.”
Cllr Paul Hughes, Cabinet member for communities and tourism, said:
“We have some beautiful parks and walking routes in South Gloucestershire and we want to make sure that these can continue to be enjoyed by everyone.”
“Dog owners have a responsibility to clean up after their pets, but unfortunately a small number of people do sometimes act irresponsibly. We hope that taking part in Keep Britain Tidy’s campaign and updating our enforcement powers will give us more tools to help combat this issue.”
To find out more and have your say on these proposals, visit the consultation webpage:
Alternatively, phone the council on 01454 868154 or visit a library or One Stop Shop.
The consultation ends on Friday 11th January 2019.
This article originally appeared in the January 2019 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 3). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH (except August), to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.
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