A gardening business owner whose trucks were repeatedly dumping green waste in various sites around Auckland has been ordered to pay up by Waitākere District Court.
He was fined at the time of the incident and prosecuted for non-disclosure of information. The judge has ordered him to pay a total of $1330, covering clean-up costs and court costs in addition to a fine of $750.
Auckland Mayor Phil Goff hopes the prosecution will remind others who may be tempted to dump waste not to do so.
“A trailer full of green waste may be dropped off at a Transfer Station for around $55, which means this man’s selfish decision cost him at least 20 times what he would have paid if he’d chosen to dispose of this waste responsibly,” the mayor said.
“Aucklanders have little patience for those who choose to harm the environment by illegally dumping waste, and offenders who put the burden of clean up and disposal unfairly onto ratepayers should expect to face the consequences and pay for their actions.”
Green waste dumped in parks is a common and costly problem for the council. When hiring a contractor or green waste service, residents are encouraged to ask about the disposal methods used.
“What’s really despicable in this case and others like it is that a commercial operator is making money out of customers, deceiving them that the waste will be disposed of legally and then expecting the ratepayers to pick up the tab for the legitimate clean-up of the dumped waste,” says Councillor Linda Cooper, Chair of the Regulatory Committee.
This case is the fifth successful prosecution dealing with soil or green waste in the past couple of years. He was caught after his vehicle was reported by witnesses who noticed it dumping green waste.
Aucklanders are quick to report this nuisance in their neighbourhood. The council receives over 1000 tips from local residents about illegal dumping each month, but we only need to resort to issuing a fine about once a day.
Prosecutions are the last resort in the council’s illegal dumping waste enforcement. Most people have some decency, and when approached, they will apologise and resolve the matter promptly.
The council considers prosecution if a large amount of rubbish is dumped; the rubbish is dumped by a repeat offender; the offender is a commercial operator; or the waste is hazardous.
Residents who see dumped rubbish are encouraged to get as much information as possible and to call 0800 NO DUMP (0800 66 3867) or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Auckland Council does not manage private property incidents but can provide advice about waste management.