Despite several requests for a root cause analysis of, and action to address, littering hot-spots problems continue to grow. There are particular issues on routes used by some students on their way to and from school (although this may be a coincidence).
Hot-spots include snickets and bus stops.
We believe that the Council should increase its surveillance of such locations and issue penalty charge notices to offenders.
We’ll get an idea of the calibre of the newly elected York Councillors
this week when they begin to consider how to scrutinise the management performance
of the local authority.
A series of updates are being presented.
A typical reportis being tabled on housing and community safety issues on 24th June.
What is immediately clear is that no performance indicators have
been tabulated (or referenced out). Councillors aren’t being told how long it
takes to do things, what any backlogs are, what quality checks are in place or
what the levels of public satisfaction are.
Some of the information is available on York Open Data but you have to search for it. Many of the figures are not up to date.
Some major issues are not mentioned at all.
The housing section fails to even mention empty Council
garages, tenants don’t feel they can influence decisions (most tenants organisations
have folded) and there are delays on the Housing Estate Improvement programmes.
Similarly on community safety (mainly policing matters) anti-social
behaviour in sub-urban areas hardly gets a mention. Trends in drug and alcohol
abuse are not quantified. Vandalism, criminal damage, graffiti, all of which disfigure
residential areas, are ignored. The trend in the number of prosecutions for this
type of offence and similar environmental crimes (litter, dog fouling) is not revealed.
The challenge for new Councillors will be not so much to question
the information that has been provided by officials, but more to probe the
areas where reports are silent.
…but more people need to heed the “Keep Britain Tidy” message
4 volunteers from the Foxwood Residents Association collected 8 bags of rubbish from the Thanet Road Sports Area today. While some could be put down to “litter drift” many of the items had clearly simply been carelessly discarded. These included dozens of cans and bottles.
These sorts of clean ups shouldn’t be necessary. There are several litter bins in the area. Its time for the Council to be more proactive in enforcing anti littering laws. Residents were promised that mobile CCTV cameras would be deployed to litter hot-spots but this hasn’t happened.
Only 5 individuals across the whole city were issued with fixed penalty notices for littering last year
There is also too much fly-tipping of garden waste on amenity areas. The Council needs to get to grips with this while fitting more vandal resistant street furniture.
New off street parking being provided in Bachelor Hill
Good to see some progress on providing more off street parking spaces. Matrix (eco grid) surfacing being provided in Bachelor Hill. Follows on fromt the completion of two additional spaces in Spurr Court.
Unfortunately we still have problems with litter. We’ve reported more issues today (see below)
As we’ve pointed out over the last few days, many of our public open spaces are looking clean and tidy at the moment.
In west York parks and amenity areas provide an attractive informal opportunity for leisure although in the Westfield ward several are under threat of development.
But there are several areas where litter and fly tipping are a problem. In some cases, items dumped many months ago still haven’t been removed by the Council.
Time for some action we think.
Fortunately, there is an active residents association in the Foxwood area and they have promised to support a month of action in their neighbourhood.
Elsewhere in the Westfield ward residents are currently less well organised so some proactive management is required.
Actions speak louder than words
Shortly there will be local elections in the area. Some candidates are already delivering literature. Both Labour and the LibDems have been seen on the streets this weekend.
The Tories have resorted to employing a contractor to deliver their leaflets They candidly admit that they don’t actually have any candidates, with only a few weeks to go before nominations close.
But no matter. If the candidates or all parties want to impress why don’t they individually organise a “spring clean” in a problem area? This might help to make a favourable impression on voters as well as enhancing the local environment?
The Keep Britain Tidy organisation coordinates an annual Great British Spring Cleancampaign. This year the campaign will run between 22nd March – 23rd April 2019 and will focus on removing single use plastics from our open spaces.