To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of increasing the fines given to those who (a) are caught fly-tipping and (b) fail to check if those disposing of waste have a valid waste carriers' licence.
Defra issued a call for evidence in 2015 prior to introducing Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) for those who have committed a fly-tipping offence. The responses to our call for evidence and further analysis when finalising the policy led to the maximum value of the FPN being set at £400.
In January 2019 we gave local authorities the power to issue a FPN to householders who fail in their duty of care. When consulting on this FPN, almost three-quarters of respondents felt that the proposed value (£200 default, maximum value of £400) was correct.
With regards to criminal prosecution for more serious fly-tipping offences, the punishment could be a fine of up to £50,000 or up to 12 months imprisonment or both when tried in a magistrates’ court. The offence can attract an unlimited fine or up to five years imprisonment or both if convicted in a Crown Court.
We committed in our manifesto to increase penalties for fly-tipping and will continue to work with magistrates, the Sentencing Council and the Judicial Office to ensure magistrates are aware of the prevalence and the significance of fly-tipping and its impact on local communities, with a view to securing tougher penalties.
The latest 2018/19 fly-tipping prosecution outcome figures showed that the value of total fines increased by 29% to £1,090,000 compared with 2017/18.