A PROMINENT councillor has branded fly-tippers and litter bugs as ‘morons’ after witnessing a deterioration in the condition of areas across South Derbyshire.
Martyn Ford, who represents Etwall and Repton on Derbyshire County Council, said that he had been left ‘appalled and disgusted’ by the levels of rubbish dumped.
He called for a crackdown on the people responsible and even said he would be on the lookout for those responsible, who he would report to the relevant authorities.
He told the Mail: “Travelling around my electoral division and ward in South Derbyshire, I am appalled and disgusted at the amount of fly-tipping and general litter that is now blighting the area.
“Not only is this illegal behaviour extremely expensive to clear away, costing taxpayers many thousands of pounds each year, it is also very damaging to the environment in general.
“Undoubtedly, much of the general litter arises just because the culprits are too lazy and thoughtless to take their rubbish home with them and dispose of it correctly. Indeed much of it is recyclable.
“The far bigger and more costly removal of fly-tipping is caused in part by laziness, those who can’t be bothered to go to a licensed site, but mostly by cowboy operators who are working outside the law, with no regard to the damage they cause to the countryside or the cost of removal.
“Hopefully the morons who continue with this anti-social and illegal practice will be apprehended and brought before the courts to feel the full weight of the law.
“They need to have either fines or custodial sentences imposed on them.
“Let’s hope it’s sooner rather than later.”
Councillor Ford’s comments may come as a surprise to some as the area normally has a very good record in terms of levels of dealing with rubbish and fly-tipping.
Statistics published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs at the end of last year showed that South Derbyshire was continuing to make inroads into the illegal and expensive problem.
A total of 582 incidents were recorded in 2012-13 compared to 763 in 2011-12 – a drop of 181.
This resulted in an estimated clearance costs reduction from £57,937 to £39,883 during the period.
Peter Watson, chairman of environmental and development services at South Derbyshire District Council, said: “Members of the public help enormously, not only by reporting fly-tips so that we can clear them up as quickly as possible, but also by contacting us when they have witnessed suspicious behaviour.
“This can be done by people calling 0800 587 2349 for free, or by heading online and visiting www.south-derbys.gov.uk.”