A TWO-PRONGED approach is needed to solve the illegal dumping problem, insisted Mr Paddy Buggy at a Mountmellick Joint Policing Committee meeting last Thursday night.
“If you are going to have a stick in one hand, you are going to have to have a carrot in the other,” urged Mr Buggy
Describing the Kyletalisha tiphead as “too expensive at the moment,” he called on county council to allow people to use the facility for half price for one month - to have “a kind of semi-amnesty.”
This, he argued, would give householders a chance to clear out rubbish and would generate revenue for the local authority.
But Deputy Co Manager Declan Byrne retorted: “I do not believe there’s a relationship between the cost of going to Kyletalisha and indiscriminate dumping. It’s not poor people who are doing that. If Kyletalisha was free, people would still go down Bay Road and other places and dump rubbish.”
Mr Buggy: “Do you think so?”
Manager Byrne: “I do. The answer to the problem is that the community are going to have to police and report. Information will be treated confidentially.”
Mr Buggy: “Do you not accept that the charges are too high? You have to wean people over to doing it the right way.”
Manager Byrne said Laois Clean-up Week - April 4 to 8 - would give people the opportunity to dispose of rubbish.
Cllr Paddy Bracken: “Those who are dumping - they are not ordinary people. I was on Bay Road last week and the amount of stuff - plastic, glass, kids’ toys, prams--everything you could mention. If Kyletalisa was open free, that dumping would still go on. We should be more vigilant.”
Cllr Rosemary Whelan: “People caught should be named and shamed. A lot of it has to do with laziness on some people’s part.”
Cllr Bobby Delaney agreed that the lanfill was too expensive and disagreed with the opening hours. He also highlighted dashboard dining.
“I was on the N80 last Saturday morning and I counted five men picking up waste. There are people having dashboard meals and throwing rubbish out the windows. It’s jail they should be getting for doing that.”
In Mountmellick, he revealed, efforts were being made to do a deal with a refuse collection company that could reduce the cost of using bins to about 12 euros a month.
Cllr Pat Bowe: “The reason they are dumping is that the fines are not high enough. It’s anti-social behaviour. There should be a minimum fine of 500 euros up to 1,000 euros. Everybody who is caught should be named and shamed.”
Cllr Stephen Lynch thought barriers might be necessary to prevent dumping in Lower Forest.