FLYTIPPER PAYS THOUSANDS EXTRA IN COSTS AS RESIDENT’S PHOTOS SCUPPER APPEAL / COMMUNITY WARD BUDGETS DOUBLE KEEPING RESIDENTS AT THE HEART OF LOCAL SPENDING
A fly-tipper who dumped waste twice in the same street ditched his court appeal when confronted with pictures taken on a resident’s mobile phone – and incurred £5,670 costs and 250 hours unpaid community service.
After borrowing the witness’s phone to zoom in, Miss Recorder Presland asked the man’s counsel whether he was really claiming not to be the man featured in the pictures – and strongly indicated the defendant may wish to consider his appeal, which if unsuccessful could result in an even harsher sentence.
The 56-year-old man from Shirley then abandoned the case at Croydon – and was ordered to pay an additional £1,500 costs on top of the original sentence of £4,170 costs with 250 hours of unpaid community service and a £60 victim surcharge.
Cllr Stuart Collins, Croydon’s cabinet member for Clean, Green Croydon said: “This man’s decision to appeal his original sentence speaks volumes about the sheer arrogance of fly-tippers, who think they can dump rubbish on our streets and get away with it – in some cases even after they have been found guilty in court.
BOLD “But the case also says a lot about the tenacity of our residents and our council – who are equally determined that they will not put up with fly-tipping anymore and will robustly defend any challenges to prosecutions.
“Big thanks to the resident who came forward with this evidence and helped us to bring this perpetrator to justice – I would urge others to do the same and back our Don’t Mess With Croydon campaign by helping us take action against people who dump rubbish illegally in our borough.”
Croydon magistrates sentenced the man for two counts of flytipping on 11 August 2016, after he was found guilty at a hearing on 5 August 2016.
The court heard how he was seen in Bramble Close on 21 May 2015 dumping rubbish, including old bits of carpet. Weeks later on 15 June 2015, he was seen again in the same street fly-tipping waste including furniture, poles and wood.
At sentencing, the court heard that at the time of the offences the man had been running a registered waste collection business which has since closed.
Croydon council has prosecuted 143 people for dumping rubbish illegally on the borough’s streets since the campaign started in 2013. (Source: Croydon council press release)
COMMUNITY WARD BUDGETS DOUBLE KEEPING RESIDENTS AT THE HEART OF LOCAL SPENDING
The amount of funding given to Croydon councillors to spend on their local areas has doubled, giving communities more money to spend on what matters to them.
Two years ago, power was handed to residents across Croydon when community ward budgets were introduced.
The initiative, which is led by ward members but with the involvement of local residents and business owners, gives each councillor in the borough his or her own budget to spend on local projects.
£576,000 has been assigned to the scheme, which will see an annual community ward budget of £24,000.
Councillors worked closely with local residents and business owners, to identify key issues, needs and priorities in their area and a number of different projects are being delivered. Residents have been at the heart of decisions on how the money was spent.
In Fieldway, some of the things it was used for in the first year were a Christmas lights competition, the New Addington People’s Carnival, equipment for Addington Conservation Trust, tickets for local scouts, a youth club cooking project, a healthy meal for elderly residents and the New Addington Autism Group.
In Croham, the community ward budget funded the printing of a bi-annual newsletter, the South End Christmas lights, photographic equipment and ipads for a local school, the local scout group’s centenary celebration and lighting to the scout hut and work in a community garden.
Cllr Simon Hall, Croydon’s cabinet member for finance and treasury, said: “The council is committed to local devolution in Croydon and the extra funding, found even with the spending pressures the council is under, will enable the community to continue to be at the heart of the decision making in their areas.
“There are different needs and issues within each community and last year the initiative funded a range of projects that were important to each local area. It is fantastic councillors will be able to deliver even more on what matters most to residents.” (Source: Croydon council press release)