After the news of leaked council proposals to cut Islington’s street cleaning, figures released last week revealed that a tiny number of fly-tipping penalties have been issued by Islington’s Labour-run Council in Canonbury since 2010.
Whilst Council figures show 165 recorded incidents of fly-tipping in Canonbury between August 2012 and 2013, the Council only issued 29 fines have been issued since 2010 and only seven since 2013.
This latest street cleaning scandal is another blow to the Council's reputation for street hygiene. Last year the Labour Council became subject to both national and local ridicule for spending £240k on a 22 man 'dog squad' to tackle Islington's endemic dog mess problem, which only issued 36 penalties in a 12 month period. Added to that, in 2014/15 the Labour Council received 265 street cleaning complaints, an increase on the previous year of 215 and well above the target of 180.
Islington South and Finsbury Prospective Parliamentary Candidate, Terry Stacy commented:
“Labour is turning a blind eye to fly-tipping and again we’re seeing standards slip. It’s pitiful that the Council collect this type of data that clearly shows a problem and simply do nothing about it. It leaves us taxpayers to live in squalor. If Labour cut street cleaning even more, as the Council are considering, they’ll make Islington the tips.”
“This isn’t only a problem in Canonbury. People are noticing how bad the streets are getting in Highbury and on Cally Road. The first thing that visitors to our borough notice is our dirty streets. Part of attracting people to our borough is making it look presentable. However, beyond being an eyesore, filthy streets create the very real health hazards associated with vermin like rats and foxes, who thrive in such a dirty environment.”
“Effective enforcement effectively pays for itself, it prevents dumping and is a deterrent to others. Labour would rather throw money at the problem and just collect the rubbish rather than finding a cost-effective solution.”
The Islington Lib Dems have launched a petition here.