In April 2016, Wrexham Council hired Kingdom Security, a private security contractor, to handle its littering problem. The contractor was given the responsibility to issue fines as well as collect penalties from residents over dog fouling and littering.
With a few months remaining in the 12-month contract, Wrexham Council’s homes and environment scrutiny committee has revealed that the contractor has issued more than 3,200 fines amounting to £263,475 from April to September 2016.
However, Counsellor David Bithell, lead member for environment and transport, stated that the council had not made a lot of money from the littering fine collection. For the first six months of the contract, the council earned merely £30,000.
Another councillor, Andrew Bailey, said that the council should be making more than it currently is, and the enforcement officers who work for the security agency should turn their attention to rural wards.
Bailey stated that the security agency was focusing on the town centre because it was easier to collect fines in the area. Also, he stated that while dog fouling and littering should be penalised, attention should also be paid to rural and certain other wards.
Bithell revealed that cleaning up dog mess and litter costs the council £1.2 million annually, and hence the council has decided to have zero tolerance when it comes to enforcement. He felt that it was irresponsible of people to drop litter or not pick up after their dogs.
Bithell emphasised that enforcing penalties was not a way for the council to make money; rather, it was to ensure that littering and dog fouling, which are a serious problem in the communities, are addressed seamlessly. He also pointed out that a lot of fines issued have not been paid yet, and hence Wrexham County Borough Council has made no more than £30,000 from this endeavour.