CHARGES are being issued by the council as it cracks down on people fly tipping and littering.

In the past month fines totalling more than £8,200 have been issued to those caught fly tipping and littering across Darlington.

Civic Enforcement Officers, from Darlington Borough Council’s Community Safety Team, issued fixed penalty notices of £400 each to 20 people caught fly-tipping, along with one of £150 for littering from a vehicle and another of £75 for dog fouling.

Officers are also investigating incidents involving larger fly-tips, some reported by concerned local residents.

Councillor Jonathan Dulston, cabinet member for stronger communities, said: "We have a zero tolerance approach to fly tipping and other and we will prosecute those responsible.

"It costs the council more than £1.5m a year for street cleaning, which includes fly-tipping – that’s money we could spend on other services for residents.

“These figures show that our efforts are producing results, but we need residents to take pride in their area, to do their bit to keep it clean and tidy."

Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) of up to £400 can be issued for environmental crimes such as fly-tipping, but we may also prosecute through the courts. The maximum fine for fly-tipping that can be imposed by a court is up to £50,000 or five years imprisonment.

Any money from FPN fines paid is used by the council to support its work in tackling environmental crime.