The government’s answer to everything these days seems to involve legislation & ‘cracking down’ on the citizens of the UK.
The latest wheeze to stamp its authority on the masses & get a bit of extra free cash at the same time, is to fine people who infringe ‘wheelie bin’ legislation.
The Flycapture Enforcement Manual (no, I didn’t make that up!), drawn up by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has ordered local councils to fine residents for refuse transgressions. The fine will be "not less than £75 & up to £110". It suggests a ‘standard’ fixed penalty sholud be £100 & states that if the fine is not paid it is "essential it is followed up".
The offences for which householders will be fined will include leaving the lid of a wheelie bin ajar, putting out a bin the evening before collection or leaving the bin in the wrong place.
I’m reminded of the Not the Nine O’Clock News sketch from the 80s when a Constable Savage is admonished for arresting one Vincent Kodogo for such made-up offences as ‘wearing a loud tie in the built up area’, ‘walking on the cracks in the pavement’ & ‘looking at me in a funny way’.
It’s interesting to note that if you walk into Tescos, steal £200-worth of booze, use it to get pissed up & damage a few streets signs or pull up someone’s prize begionias, you’ll probably end up with an £80 fixed penalty ticket, and nothing else. If you leave the lid open on a wheelie bin you’ll get a £100 fine.
If you fail to pay the fine, you could end up hundreds of pounds in debt to the magistrates court.