Since the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 became law, new measures have been introduced, enabling local authorities to issue Fixed Penalty Notices to anyone committing an environmental crime that damages the environment. Surrey Heath Borough Council is committed to dealing with environmental crime by the use of Fixed Penalty Notices.
Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN) generally deal with environmental offences such as litter, graffiti and dog fouling, and can be issued by local authority officers and other authorised officers such as Police Community Support Officers. The FPN is issued as an alternative to a prosecution in court. FPNs can be issued to anyone over 10 years old and penalties will vary according to the offence.
Surrey Heath Borough Council's Neighbourhood Officer in partnership with the Police Community Support Officer's (PCSO's) patrol the Borough to detect and deter enviro crime offences. They are trained in the detection of enviro crime, and act as witnesses in any court proceedings taken by the Council.
From March 2009 authorised officers of the Council will be issuing FPN for a range of crimes.
When might an FPN be issued?
Examples of offences where a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) may be issued include:
Receiving a penalty notice does not mean that you have received a criminal conviction. The FPN is given instead of a prosecution in court.
If you have received an FPN, you have 14 calendar days to pay the penalty or to request a hearing. Certain crimes offer a lower penalty if paid within 10 days.
Failure to pay a penalty may result in a higher fine imposed by the court or imprisonment.