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POOP SCOOP - NEW ACT WILL HELP CLEAN UP THE MESS

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New powers enabling local authorities to create new 'poop scoop' areas quickly and efficiently should be in place b...
New powers enabling local authorities to create new 'poop scoop' areas quickly and efficiently should be in place by the end of the year, environment minister James Clappison announced today.

The Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act received Royal Assent on 17 June. The Act replaces the existing byelaws and simplifies the way in which local authorities in England and Wales can seek to control dog fouling. It allows authorities too designate as 'poop scoop' areas most public land - without having to seek the agreement of central government, as at present.

In reply to a parliamentary question, Mr Clappison said:

'My department has today invited local authorities and other interested bodies to comment by 13 September on the proposed implementation of this Act. Our aim is that local authorities will be able to use these welcome new powers before the end of this year.'

The Act creates a new offence of failing to clear up after one's dog on designated land. Local authorities will have the option of charging offenders a fixed penalty of £25.

-- The new Act applies to land in the open air, including covered land which is open to the air on at least one side, to which the public have access with or without payment. Exceptions are carriage ways with a speed limit of more than 40 miles per hour and land running alongside them; land used for agriculture or woodlands; land which is predominantly marshland, moor or heath; and rural common land.

Copies of the consultation documents on the proposed arrangements for the implementation of the new Act are available from Ian Jones, Air and Environment Quality Division, Room B244, Romney House, 43 Marsham Street, London SW1P 3PY (tel: 0171 276 8456/8497).

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