On-the-spot fines are being considered as a new penalty to deal with illegal dumping, following complaints from legislators.
Roydell Carter, director of the Department of Environmental Health, said the current legal process for dealing with people who dump trash on public land or private property was cumbersome.
He said the law currently called for a notice to be served on the owner of the land where the trash was dumped.
“That is a challenge when the owner did not deposit the litter,” he added.
If offenders are caught, he said enforcement was still very difficult and involved a lengthy process in the summary court.
“That would be one of the aspects we want to improve with more on-the-spot tickets similar to the police system,” he said.
Bodden Town West legislator Chris Saunders said illegal dumping was rife, particularly in the Beach Bay area.
He suggested upping the penalty to $5,000 or $10,000 as a deterrent.
East End legislator Arden McLean said the problem was widespread over the eastern districts and blamed lack of enforcement.
He said it was happening on a regular basis “all day long.” He claimed that on one occasion he caught someone in the act and blocked them in with his vehicle before calling the police and the Department of Environmental Health. “Nothing came of it,” he said.
Mr. Carter said his department would be engaging in a “blitz campaign” of public education and adding signage throughout the island.
He added that the prevalence of illegal dumping was baffling given that people could dispose of their waste without charge at the dump.
“We provide garbage collection,” he said. “There is 24-hour public drop-off at the landfill; there are provisions to facilitate those kind of things. There really should be no need for illegal dumping. It does occur, we are aware of it and want to be more proactive with ticketing or on-the-spot fines.”