AVBC Aims to Introduce New Legislation For Dog Owners

Dog owners in Amber Valley are set to be the focus of a raft of new council offences – with fines of up to £1,000.

The borough council is on the verge of bringing in a number of new measures to crack down on unreasonable and persistent anti-social behaviour involving dogs.

In 2017, Amber Valley Borough Council approved legislation to ensure that dog owners keep their pets on leads and pick up their faeces in cemeteries.

At a meeting of the authority’s cabinet on Wednesday 19th June councillors are set to discuss rolling this out to all public spaces in the borough.

Councillors will be looking to approve or reject consultation on the new offences.

The results of this consultation, if approved, would come back to the council in September, with rollout of the new offences coming into place from Sunday 20th October 2019.

If approved, dog owners will have to remove dog faeces from all public land and must be able to demonstrate to council enforcement officers that they have doggy bags – or another suitable means of cleaning up after their dogs.

On top of this, dogs will not be allowed to enter children’s play areas within parks and open space, of which there are 94 across the borough.

Dogs must be kept on leads within the six cemeteries in the borough, at Alfreton, Belper, Crosshill, Heanor, Leabrooks and Ripley.

The council says that the restrictions are “to address concerns about dog fouling within public areas and the control of dogs within cemeteries and children’s play areas”.

These new restrictions would be contained in a proposed Public Spaces Protection (Control of Dogs) Order.
There would be a maximum penalty of £1,000 for those breaching the order.

Alternatively, the alleged offender may be offered the opportunity of “discharging any liability to prosecution for the offence” by paying a fixed penalty of £60, if paid within 10 days, and £100, if paid between 11 and 28 days.

A report on the issue says: “The council is satisfied that activities have been carried out in the borough that have had a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality.
“The council is further satisfied that the effect of these activities is likely to be of a persistent and continuing nature and is of such as to make the activities unreasonable and the effect of the activities justifies the restrictions imposed.”

Eddie Bisknell (LDRS)

Eddie writes for Nailed through the Local Democracy Reporting Service, in partnership with the BBC. The Local Democracy Reporting Service is a partnership of media outlets sharing reporters to cover council meetings.

2 thoughts on “AVBC Aims to Introduce New Legislation For Dog Owners

  • 14th June 2019 at 9:37 pm

    Great plan – but will any of it be enforced? and if so – who by? Just curious but can the council make prosecution in a cemetery by a church stick? and if so can it apply to dogs who wander onto a garden?

  • 16th July 2019 at 11:25 am

    If I am stopped by a dog warden and asked to prove I have a plastic bag for picking up after my dog, what will happen if I say I don’t have to? As far as I am aware, they don’t have powers to search me. Am I going to be arrested if I refuse to comply with their request?

    If they say they are going to send me a fixed penalty notice (FPN) in the post, and what will happen if I refuse to give my name?

    Am I going to be recorded on video whether I pick up after my dog or not whenever I am walking him, as happens in other towns in the UK? Who will do this, and what will be done with the video footage?

    Will a private company be providing some (or all) of the council officers? What’s the financial incentive for them for handing out FPNs? If there is profit being made by the company providing the service, how many FPNs need to be handed out to make the scheme financially viable?

    As a dog owner, I think this is very ill conceived and an unreasonable intrusion into my private life.

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