by Samantha Hepworth
Plans to dole out on the spot fines by a private company to litterbugs have met with a lukewarm response in North Leeds.
In response to a city wide “litter epidemic” –Leeds City Council are putting on extra patrols to catch people dropping litter.
The move aims to tackle the £8m bill the council forks out for street cleaning.
A spokesperson for Leeds City Council said: “Specialist firm 3gs, will work alongside the council’s existing team of enforcement officers.
“The environmental patrols will be targeted at high profile areas in the city centre and problematic hot spots for six months.”
Jeff Yates, 53, from is founder member of Litter Free Guiseley Campaign and said: “It was in response to the litter epidemic over the last 10 years but it will make limited impact – laudable initiative, but not a game changer.”
And residents agree – Anna Stansfield, 62 from Southway in Horsforth, is not certain whether this initiative will improve the area, she said: “It would just depend when they came, as they have to see them dropping the litter to fine them.”
Judith Staples 76, from Blackheath Drive in Cookridge, said the problem could then be with over aggressive wardens – she said: “People like that tend to go over the top, fining people for accidently dropping a sweet wrapper.”
Part of the new initiative is also to thank people for dispensing with their junk in the correct manner. The Council said: “Another part of the pilot project will be a reward scheme offered by 3gs. If people are seen by officers using litter bins, they will be given the option to have their name entered into a prize draw.”