A CLAMPDOWN on dog fouling by bringing in a private enforcement company is planned by Mid and East Antrim Borough Council.
The Council is planning to draft in a firm to patrol “hotspots” and fine offenders.
The Council says an external company will be “working alongside the existing enforcement team patrolling identified hotspots, to increase the detection of offenders and get improvements in general cleanliness”.
Cllr Marc Collins said that dog fouling and litter are “two of the most common and emotive issues that we will deal with as councillors”.
He described the pilot as “a great idea”.
The councillor added: “In August, I raised the issue of the lack of litter and dog fouling penalty notices issued by council and asked for the director to bring back a more detailed report and to look for other ways for us to achieve a higher success rate.
“Hopefully this will act as a deterrent for anyone selfish enough to leave behind dog foul or litter.”
Alliance Councillor Danny Donnelly said: “It’s certainly an issue that we get a lot of complaints about. It’s also one I’ve noticed to be on the rise.
“I think it’s worth trying a different approach which might identify a better way of doing things. It’s worth trying something that might help with this troublesome issue.”
A spokesperson for Mid and East Antrim Borough Council said: “The vast majority of our citizens are responsible, but unfortunately there are those who continue to flout the law when it comes to dog fouling, fly-tipping and littering.
“As a council, we don’t want to have to issue fines for people breaking the law, and that’s why we are giving everybody advanced notice of the proposed changes within our borough, and to make people aware.”
The council also encourages members of the public to contact council with any information regarding concerns they have about dog fouling.
Anybody who allows their dog to foul in public and fails to pick it up can be given an £80 on-the-spot fine.