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New strategy to help clean up the borough

An important new strategy aimed at cleaning up Boston has been recommended for adoption by Boston Borough Council's Cabinet.

On Tuesday councillors approved the council's first environmental enforcement strategy, drafted in response to the council's recent task and finish group on street cleansing.

Its aim is to protect the health, safety, amenity, environment and local economy of and for people living in, working in and visiting the borough.

Action on littering, fly tipping, dog fouling, graffiti, urinating in the streets, fly posting and abandoning a vehicle will all be covered by a robust strategy. It will raise awareness and, where necessary, prescribe enforcement action.

Cllr Stephen Woodliffe, portfolio holder for community safety, said it was an important document which would promote prevention as an alternative to prosecution.

"But we will not shy away from prosecution," he warned. "The activities of a few cause considerable distress and damage the reputation of our town."

Cllr Michael Brookes, deputy joint leader and portfolio holder for waste services, said: "We want to improve environmental quality and attractiveness by reducing environmental crime across the borough. We will enforce, but want to educate. It is far better that people accept that they have got a responsibility to keep the borough clean. Enforcement will be the last resort but we will be firm with fixed penalty notices."

He said individuals and groups and organisations which help the council with this work, such as those who join the annual Big Boston Clean-up and Big Schools Clean-up, litter champions, Greenscapers, Operation Fly Swat and others, are to be acknowledged with new environment recognition awards.

There will be consultation with the public over a plan to make spitting an offence under littering legislation

Cabinet also agreed to adopt a corporate enforcement policy to provide guidance for the council in carrying out functions as a regulatory authority.