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More litter louts left out of pocket

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MORE people have been left out of pocket after carelessly or purposely littering our county.

During July 2019, Carmarthenshire County Council enforcement officers handed out more than £1,600 in fixed penalty notices (FPNs).

They were for a range of offences, including larger fines for the worst fly-tipping offences, for failing to clear dog poo and littering at community recycling sites.

· Two £300 FPNs (£600 total) were issued to a Llanelli business owner who tried to dispose of his business waste at the Llanelli Household Waste Recycling Centre. He was also issued with notices requiring him to produce relevant documentation allowing him to transport waste, but he failed to do so within the specified time

· A £350 FPN was issued to a Llanelli resident for dumping several black refuse bags on the ground at a recycling facility in Dylan, Llwynhendy

· A £300 FPN was issued to a Llanelli resident for failing to check that man he’d paid to remove his waste was licenced and authorised to transport waste. The waste was illegally dumped in the Penygraig area of Llanelli. Enforcement officers are still trying to track the illegal waste carrier

· A £100 FPN was issued to a Carmarthen town centre resident for breaching a Section 46 notice requiring her to properly manage the waste she puts out for collection

· A £100 FPN was issued to a Llanelli man for failing to pick up his dog’s poo. He was reported by a member of the public and was tracked down by officers

· A £75 FPN was issued to a Llanelli woman for leaving a black refuse bag on the ground at Cefncaeau recycling facility

· A £75 FPN was issued to a Llanelli resident for a leaving a cardboard box on the ground at Cefncaeau recycling facility

· A £75 FPN was issued to a man for fly-posting in Carmarthen town centre

Cllr Philip Hughes, Executive Board Member for enforcement, said: “There is absolutely no excuse for littering. There are plenty of waste disposal facilities, including weekly kerbside collections, community recycling sites, business waste collections and household waste recycling centres.

“People know it is wrong to litter, or not pick up after their dog, yet there are those who clearly have no regard for our environment and prefer someone else to pick up after them.

“It is simply not acceptable. We all have a part to play in keeping Carmarthenshire clean.”

Residents are reminded to put their waste and recycling out for collection after 6pm on the evening before their collection day, and to ensure they carry out their duty of care by checking they are using a licensed waste carrier to take away any waste on their behalf.

People using community recycling sites are reminded that they should not leave items on the ground, and are asked to report full containers to the council.

Anyone who has witnessed a littering or dog fouling incident, or has information about fly-tipping offences, can contact the council online 24/7 at www.carmarthenshire.gov.wales or during office hours on 01267 234567.

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SirGâredig – Sharing Carmarthenshire’s Kindness

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RESIDENTS and businesses across Carmarthenshire are showing remarkable community spirit by helping and supporting those in need in their communities during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The council has been overwhelmed by the kindness of residents’ during this extraordinary time when supporting the most vulnerable people in our communities is more important than ever.

A number of voluntary groups have been set up to help wherever they can, offering both practical and emotional support – and it is truly amazing to see.

Now we want to help bring all this together and share the good work that is taking place across the county.

SirGâredig – Sharing Carmarthenshire’s Kindness will connect people in need, with those that can help. It will provide a focal point for community activities and encourage people to share stories of kindness.

SirGâredig is a play on words – Sir Gâr being the colloquial term for Sir Gaerfyrddin (Carmarthenshire) and Caredig, the Welsh word for ‘kind’.

Our website has lots of helpful information on the various support groups that have been set up and how you can become a volunteer. Town and community councils are also co-ordinating volunteers in their areas and working closely with local groups. There is also information on what else you can do to help, for example, staying connected with family and friends, and looking out for your neighbours, particularly the vulnerable who may be targeted by criminals. We can also signpost people in need to the right support and information.

Council Leader Emlyn Dole said: “We know there are a huge number of people who are already volunteering and many more who want to help their communities. It has been heartening to see and we are incredibly grateful.

“Now more than ever we need to do all we can to help people in need, particularly older and vulnerable people in our communities. A large number of people are in a lengthy period of isolation at home which leaves them unable to carry out tasks and errands for themselves. And those who are able to, can contribute in a way which makes a real difference.

“SirGâredig is about helping people to help each other, as we all get through this together. So, if you want to help please get in touch; and if you need help or support in any way please contact us so we can help to arrange it for you.

“We also want to hear from you if you have positive stories to share, if someone has shown you kindness during this difficult time. Let’s applaud them, give our thanks and show our sense of community and solidarity during this challenging time.”

Visit newsroom.carmarthenshire.gov.wales/sirgaredig for more information or call 01267 234567 if you would like to speak to someone.

If you have an act of kindness you would like to share, please tweet us @CarmsCouncil using the hashtag #SirGaredig or post on our Facebook page @CarmarthenshireCC

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Man issued with two COVID-19 fines in 24 hours as police thank those following new legislation

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A man has been issued with two fines in 24 hours for flouting Coronavirus legislation, as police thank those who are following the new rules.

Dyfed-Powys Police officers in Carmarthenshire stopped the 22-year-old from Llanelli twice for being out of the house without a reasonable excuse.

A report was made on April 1 that three men were breaching the COVID-19 legislation by gathering in Llanstephan. A woman who had attempted to film the men reported that they had stolen her phone and driven away.

Officers quickly linked the car to a suspect and traced it driving towards Carmarthen and then Llanelli, and a roads policing unit was directed to the area.

The car was stopped, and the two occupants – a 22-year-old from Llanelli, and a 18-year-old from Carmarthen – were arrested on suspicion of theft. They were also both issued with tickets for COVID-19 offences.

T/Chief Inspector Tom Sharville said: “We are taking the new legislation seriously, and would like to thank the majority of people who are staying home to keep others safe.

“The measures are difficult to adapt to, but it is important that we stay at home to save lives.

“However, there is a minority out there who are under the impression the legislation does not apply to them, and are flouting the law.

“This was the second fine one of these men was issued with in 24 hours, after he showed a clear disregard for all guidelines.”

The men were arrested on suspicion of theft of a mobile phone, and were released under investigation pending further enquiries.

For information about the COVID-19 legislation, and answers to many frequently asked questions, visit https://bit.ly/DPPCovid19

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Housing support for residents

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SPECIALIST housing support and advice is available to residents in Carmarthenshire who are worried about the coronavirus crisis.

This is an extremely difficult time for residents, and we want to help as much as possible, whether you are a homeowner, a council tenant or a tenant in privately rented accommodation.

We can also help if you are currently homeless or ‘sofa-surfing’ between properties, or maybe you are a key worker and you can’t return home because someone vulnerable lives there.

Whatever your situation, our specialist advice team can provide you with a range of housing options to help you.

It is very important we stay at home at present, and we understand that this can difficult for some.

Please contact us for advice if you are:

• Currently homeless
• Sofa-surfing between different properties
• Can no longer remain at your current home
• Living in a private property and can’t pay the rent
• Having difficulties paying your mortgage
• Work for the NHS, social care or are a key worker that can’t return home because someone vulnerable lives there

Our housing advisors could help to resolve your current issues or find you somewhere temporary and safe to live.

We have already contacted a number of our tenants to see if we can help. If you are experiencing difficulties with your rent, please contact your housing officer directly so they can discuss with you what support is available. All of our officers can be reached by telephone and email.

We are working closely with a number of partner agencies such as Shelter Cymru and are also looking at what we, as a council, can put in place to help residents.

Executive Board Member for Housing Cllr Linda Evans said: “We know that this is a very worrying time for residents, especially when you have a home and family to look after and are concerned about making ends meet.

“However, I want to reassure you that we will do all we can to help you during this difficult time. Making sure that you feel secure in your home is very important.

“Our housing officers will provide as much support as they can and if our council tenants have any concerns about keeping up with payments, please get in touch so we can help explore all of the options available to you.

“I want to reassure our council tenants that they will not lose their home as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.”

Please call our housing advice team on 01554 899389, Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm, or email SCHOptions@carmarthenshire.gov.uk. Outside normal office hours Delta Wellbeing provides an emergency service on 0300 333 2222.

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