Number of flytipping offences in the Scottish Borders between 2010 and 2018

The request was partially successful.

Jonathan Rainey

Dear Scottish Borders Council,

I write this letter under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to request the following information on flytipping:

1. How many flytipping incidents in the county that your authority controls were reported to Scottish Borders Council, Police Scotland (including then Strathclyde Police) and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency between 2010 and 2018?
2. How many flytipping cases were dropped between 2010 and 2018 because the evidence was found to be tampered with? Also, how many were dropped due to fears of reprisals from the reported offender(s)? How many were also dropped due to lack of evidence?
3. Can the citizens of the Scottish Borders area set up their own covert surveillance cameras to capture flytippers in the act themselves? If so, apart from Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (especially regarding section 2 on privacy being exempt in the interest of preventing crime and disorder) what exact laws need to be taken into consideration which includes regards to the Information Commissioner’s Office? If high-quality footage of an offence was successfully captured, can the footage be used in court?
4. What is the Litter Control Strategy that Scottish Borders Council has to abide by when investigating flytipping cases along with dog fouling and littering cases?

Yours faithfully,

Jonathan Rainey

Freedom of Information, Scottish Borders Council

Dear Jonathan Rainey

I acknowledge receipt of your request for information relating to the
above and shall respond within the relevant 20 working day period.

Yours sincerely

Information Management Team

Scottish Borders Council

0300 100 1800

[1][Scottish Borders Council request email]

[2]Web | [3]Twitter | [4]Facebook | [5]Flickr | [6]YouTube

How are you playing [7]#yourpart to help us keep the Borders thriving?

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Jonathan Rainey

Dear Freedom of Information,

I issue a small correction. I stated in the previous letter that the information should include those from then-Strathclyde Police. I actually should have said the information be requested from then-Lothian and Borders Police.

Yours sincerely,

Jonathan Rainey

Freedom of Information, Scottish Borders Council

Many thanks for clarifying

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Freedom of Information, Scottish Borders Council

Dear Jonathan Rainey

 

The above request is exempt under S39(2) Environmental Information of
FOISA  therefore we respond under the Environmental Information (Scotland)
Regulations 2004.

 

The following response was prepared and provided on behalf of Assets &
Infrastructure:

 

1. Scottish Borders Council do not hold figures for Police or SEPA
therefore, we give notice of under Regulation 10(4)(a) of EI(S)R 2004.

 

We do however hold the following information:

 

Jan to Dec 2010 – 810

Jan to Dec 2011 – 780

Jan to Dec 2012 - 587

Jan to Dec 2013 - 463

Jan to Dec 2014 - 478

Jan to Dec 2015 - 336

Jan to Dec 2016 - 434

Jan to Dec 2017 - 459

Jan to Dec 2018 - 506

2. None to all questions

3. Scottish Borders Council do not hold any information relating to this
question therefore, we give notice under Regulation 10(4)(a) of EI(S)R
2004. We would suggest contacting Police Scotland:
[1][email address]

4. Environmental Protection Act & Dog Fouling Act

 

The Scottish Borders Council dog fouling strategy encompasses the
investigation of complaints, cleansing and education. 

 

In order for a complaint of dog fouling to be investigated, Scottish
Borders Council requires a witness statement from the complainant with the
following information as a minimum:

-              accused details (name and address)

-              when and where the fouling occurred

-              description of the dog

 

This information is then referred to the Police Community Action Team for
consideration of service of a Fixed Penalty Notice.  The complainant must
be prepared to make a witness statement and attend court (if necessary) in
order for enforcement action to be considered.

 

Where there is an accumulation of dog fouling in public areas, the
Council’s Neighbourhood Teams can arrange for the area to be cleansed and
stencilled with anti-fouling signs and for anti-fouling posters to be
erected.

 

The Council also recently employed a Dog Education Officer whose remit is
to educate different demographic groups on responsible dog ownership. 
This will include educating dog owners on their responsibility to pick up
after their dogs as required by the Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act 2003. 

 

The Council also advocates for local communities to partake in the Green
Dog Walker scheme which encourages pledgers to talk to other dog owners
about dog fouling in order to drive a change in behaviour and to make it
socially unacceptable to not pick up after your dog.

 

I should advise that you have a right to request a review within 40
working days from the date we respond to your request.  You should either
e-mail [2][Scottish Borders Council request email] or write to the Information Manager,
Scottish Borders Council, Council HQ, Newtown St. Boswells TD6 0SA.

 

If after the Council’s FOI Advice Group have considered your review and
you are still not happy with the decision you then have a right to appeal
to the Office of the Scottish Information Commissioner, you do this either
by visiting [3]http://www.itspublicknowledge.info/Appea... or by post to: 
Kinburn Castle, Doubledykes Road, St. Andrews, fife KY16 9DS.

Yours sincerely

for the

Information Management Team

Scottish Borders Council

Newtown St Boswells

TD6 0SA

E mail:  [email address]

Tel: 0300 100 1800

 

 

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References

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2. mailto:[Scottish Borders Council request email]
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Jonathan Rainey

Dear Scottish Borders Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Scottish Borders Council's handling of my FOI request 'Number of flytipping offences in the Scottish Borders between 2010 and 2018'.

Although I thank you for answering the 1st and 4th questions in the previous FOI request, I would like to request that certain questions be answered as stated in the previous FOI request along with the following questions below:

1. In response to the 2nd question, you answered it by stating you did not have any information considering that a total of 4853 cases were reported to your authority between 2010 and 2018 so I ask the previous questions along with 1 new question again:
i) How many flytipping cases reported to your authority between 2010 and 2018 resulted in FPNs and/or criminal convictions?
ii) How many flytipping cases reported to your authority between 2010 and 2018 were subject to no further investigation due to insufficient evidence?
iii) How many flytipping cases reported to your authority between 2010 and 2018 were not subject to further investigation due to tampering of evidence?
iv) How many flytipping cases reported to your authority between 2010 and 2018 were not subject to further investigation due to concerns raised from the complainant(s) about reprisals from the reported offender(s)?

2. In response to the 3rd question, considering you also did not want to answer it, other councils have been asked the same question on whatdotheyknow.com including West Dunbartonshire and West Lothian and they have openly stated that members of the public are not permitted to use covert cameras because of many laws including RIPSA 2000, Data Protection Act 1998, Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act 2003 and regulations from the Information Commissioner's Office. West Lothian Council responded to the same answered questions:

"Covert cameras would not be allowed to be set up by individuals for us to
use the footage. As a Council, if we wanted to use covert cameras we have
to comply with Regulation to Investigatory Powers (Scotland) Act 2000
(RIPSA) legislation to be able to use them.

If overt camera footage is supplied by anyone, along with a statement from
them then we could consider its use as part of evidence for issuing a
Fixed Penalty Notice."

West Dunbartonshire Council responded:

"West Dunbartonshire Council residents, as with other members of the
general public, cannot set up covert CCTV cameras. In terms of
house/residence security any CCTV cameras would have to be clearly
marked with signage. Moreover the camera itself would also need to be
positioned in such a way that it was confined to entry security and
would not capture street images which might contain personal data of
members of the public going about their daily business.

The second part of your question 3 is based on covert cameras. Only
those bodies listed in the Regulation of Investigatory Powers (Scotland)
Act are permitted to carry out covert surveillance. In this regard I would
refer you to the Office of Surveillance Commissioners.

I refer also to our response dated 27 September 2018 to your FOI
18/1951137 review request where we confirmed that West
Dunbartonshire Council does not use surveillance including covert
surveillance to pursue or identify flytipping offences."

I would like to rephrase the questions so they can be answered in this internal review request:
i) If the citizens of the Scottish Borders Council area give over their contact details to your authority when reporting flytippers, are their details involving their name(s) and address(es) mentioned to the offender(s)?
ii) Does your authority use covert and overt surveillance cameras to capture flytippers in the act?
iii) Would Article 8 (Section 2 for exemption to privacy) of the European Convention on Human Rights be applied as an excuse by your authority and the citizens of the Scottish Borders to deploy covert and overt cameras to catch flytippers in the act? This has been advised in a 2013 ICO document (https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/consult...) which is where you need to confirm if you abide by the rules in the document.

An extra link to my article is provided for more references: https://jrainey94.wixsite.com/younglitte...

Can your authority confirm if all the rules and regulations highlighted in this internal review request as well as the article above are abided by?

I will pass on your response to part 3 of question 3 in the previous FOI request to the courts.

4. Does your authority abide by COPLAR 2018?

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/n...

Yours faithfully,

Jonathan Rainey

Freedom of Information, Scottish Borders Council

Dear Jonathan Rainey

 

I acknowledge receipt of your email requesting a review of the Council’s
response to your request for information under the Environmental
Information Regulations relating to the above.

 

The FOI Advice Group shall meet within the 20 working day period and a
response will be sent to you within that timescale.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Information Management Team

Scottish Borders

 

 

 

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Frater, Brian, Scottish Borders Council

1 Attachment

Afternoon

 

Please find attached the response to your FOI request No. 12767 which I
was asked to forward to you by Brian Frater, Service Director Regulatory
Services.

 

Kind regards

 

Katrina Wilson

PA – Corporate Management Support

Scottish Borders Council

Council Headquarters

Tele No:  01835 825061

Customer Services: 0300 100 1800

E-mail: [1]kwilson@scotborders. gov. uk

 

[2]Web | [3]Twitter | [4]Facebook | [5]Flickr | [6]YouTube

 

How are you playing [7]#yourpart to help us keep the Borders thriving?

 

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References

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6. http://www.youtube.com/scotborderscouncil
7. http://www.scotborders.gov.uk/yourpart