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Dog walkers in part of Nottinghamshire could be fined for not carrying waste bags

today5 July 2022

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A new rule could lead to dog walkers getting fined up to £100 in Rushcliffe if they do not carry dog waste bags with them. The plan is part of a Rushcliffe Borough Council proposal to bring in a number of new orders to control dogs in public places.

Public Spaces Protection Orders are designed to deal with nuisance affecting a certain area in a community. Now, council papers reveal the authority is likely to approve a set of new orders which cover a ban on dog fouling on the majority of land in Rushcliffe.

The plans could go a step further, making it an offence if dog walkers do not carry dog waste bags with them – a move which has already been taken up by a number of other councils elsewhere in England.

Dog walkers could be exempt if they have “a reasonable excuse” for not bringing a bag, or if the owner of the land has consented to the person not picking up the mess.

The council’s Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Environment and Safety, Rob Inglis, said the rule will “tackle the minority who flout the rules”.

The orders would also mean dogs must be kept on leads in certain areas within Rushcliffe Country Park.

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Dogs would also be banned from all children’s play areas, multi-use games areas, skate parks and fenced gym equipment zones, if the move is approved.

Tollerton Parish Council requested that its land be excluded from the PSPO and called the proposals “unnecessary”.

For a council to implement a PSPO, the problem must be likely to have a “detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality” and be “persistent or continuing in nature”.

People who break the rules could receive a fixed penalty of £100 with an early repayment reduction to £60. If not paid, court action may follow.

However, the papers state that the council’s two dog wardens have limited time for dog fouling patrols. The proposals are recommended for approval at the Rushcliffe Borough Council full council meeting on July 7.

If approved, the move will cost around £15,000 to implement due to costs such as warning signs. It comes after the authority completed two consultations on the plans, which found people were “overwhelmingly supportive of the additional controls”.

Cllr Inglis said: “We’re aware the vast majority of dog owners take their responsibilities seriously and these new powers are there to tackle the minority who flout the rules including those who routinely don’t carry bags to clear up.

“We are keen to protect residents from any of the issues dog fouling raises and the overwhelming support from stakeholders to last year’s consultations shows we have a strong mandate to debate this further at Full Council on Thursday.

“It will potentially introduce these wider powers but with the emphasis on engaging and educating dog owners and only applying fines where necessary.

“Our message to all dog owners is to always carry bags to ensure you’re ready to do the right thing and always pick up after your pet.”

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Written by: thehitnetwork

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