A MOTORIST in Huddersfield has become the first in Kirklees to be fined by a new zero-tolerance squad for throwing litter.
The driver was nabbed by a recently formed council enforcement team after being spotted by an onlooker who wrote down the registration number.
He was reported to the squad, who then sent him with a £50 fixed penalty notice.
The move was part of a crackdown by the new anti-litter squad which has powers to enforce on-the-spot fines against litter louts.
The fine was revealed just days after a litter blight was highlighted as one reason why Huddersfield pulled out of the Yorkshire in Bloom contest.
Clr David Payne, Cabinet member with responsibility for the environment, said: "We hope that this will send out a clear message that we want to see a clean and tidy town centre and environment.
"That's what people tell us they want.
"We have taken steps to set up this enforcement team and hopefully people will realise that if they throw things on the ground they are likely to get a fine."
A spokesman for the litter and fly-tipping enforcement team said: "We issued the fixed penalty notice last week, like you get for speeding, for someone throwing litter from a car.
"The notice has been paid. This is the first of many."
The spokesman said that the penalty notices are sent to the registered keeper of the vehicle, whether or not they were the person who committed the offence.
The spokesman added: "We get the registration number from the witness.
"We have a contact in the police who looks at the police national computer and tells us who the owner is.
"Offenders have 14 days to pay the fine. If they do not we may take them to court."
The enforcement team was set up in March this year after the Cabinet on Kirklees Council voted in measures to clamp down on litter louts and businesses whose activities cause litter problems.
It has also been revealed that in March this year, a litter lout was fined £120 by Huddersfield magistrates for throwing a baby's dummy and sweet wrappers from a car in Huddersfield under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
If alleged offenders opt to go to court, they can face a maximum fine of £2,500 if found guilty.
Businesses who fail to dispose of their waste at an authorised site face a £20,000 maximum fine.
Investigations are under way into people who have been seen fly-tipping. Council officials would not reveal in which area.
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