Mayor Goff calls for harsher penalties on illegal dumpers
Tuesday 13 November 2018
Mayor Phil Goff has welcomed Auckland Council’s second successful prosecution of an illegal dumper in two weeks but says the penalties should be much higher.
In July a commercial truck was caught on council surveillance dumping a large amount of inorganic material in Wiri, South Auckland. A second dumping was recorded at the same location the following week. The offender was prosecuted, pleaded guilty to both charges and was fined $1,000 plus costs. The offender had previously been fined for dumping green waste in Franklin.
Mayor Phil Goff said, “I’m pleased this cowboy commercial outfit has been fined, but given their blatant disregard for our environment, the penalty needs to be tougher. Having offenders spend their weekends cleaning up rubbish around the city, for example, would be a good case of a penalty that fits the crime.
“This is brazen recidivism from a commercial operator with no regard for the ratepayer. Frankly, acting in this way should attract harsher consequences.
“We have made an approach to the government to amend the relevant legislation because the penalties under the Litter Act 1979 are clearly not an effective deterrent in 2018.”
Earlier this month another recidivist commercial dumper was identified in South Auckland. The offender in that instance was fined $3,500 plus costs for dumping concrete and soil on three separate occasions in Māngere.
The prosecutions follow the Mayor’s announcement in February of $200,000 in additional funding to hire extra enforcement staff and double the number of CCTV cameras in hotspot areas.
Phil Goff said, “We as council are cracking down because like most Aucklanders we are tired of a few irresponsible individuals blighting our landscape because they’re too lazy or irresponsible to dispose of their rubbish appropriately.
“Not only does it damage the environment, it burdens ratepayers with the costs of clean-up. Litter and illegal dumping cost ratepayers more than $1 million in removal costs alone last year.
“With more prosecutions in progress, we’ll be continuing to make sure those who dump illegally are held to account,” Mayor Phil Goff said.
Members of the public are encouraged to report any suspected illegal dumping activity by phoning 0800 NODUMP (0800 663 867) – the 24-hour illegal dumping hotline.