A Doncaster politician has blasted the council over its failure to tackle littering after new figures revealed the number of littering fines dished out has fallen by almost half.
Former Mayor Peter Davies said despite a plunge in the number of fines handed out, the town’s littering problem is getting ‘worse and worse.
Statistics obtained by The Free Press showed that during the 2014/15 financial year the council fined 1,116 residents, down from 1,948 in 2013/14.
The number of people fined has continued to fall significantly since 2010/11, when 3,592 people were fined. This dropped to 2,750 in 2011/12.
Mr Davies, who served as the town’s directly elected mayor until 2013, said: “It should be up there on the list of things the Mayor prioritises.
“I come into Doncaster town centre almost every day and you see fewer and fewer people around and I think it’s got to be to do with the state of the town centre.
“You can’t walk anywhere without being worried about what waste you might walk into. And everywhere you go there seems to be people sleeping in doorways, it didn’t used to be like that.”
Coun Chris McGuinness, cabinet member for environment, said: “The number of fines issued has fallen every year since 2010.
“With the government cuts to funding we cannot employ more council staff in this area, but we are determined to make Doncaster a cleaner and greener borough. That is why we have recently engaged Kingdom Security to provide additional enforcement services, including issuing fixed penalty notices for littering.
“It is just a small minority of thoughtless individuals who let the vast majority of responsible residents and businesses down by dropping litter. Ultimately, keeping Doncaster tidy is everyone’s responsibility and we will continue to take strong action against environmental crime.”
Meanwhile, Doncaster Council also confirmed it has failed to issue any fines for spitting.
A by-law passed by full council in 2013 made the habit illegal and gave the local authority the power to give out fines of up to £500 for the offence.