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Fine dog walkers who don't carry pooper scoopers, say city chiefs

CITY chiefs want to be able to fine dog walkers for failing to carry pooper scoopers.

Dublin City Council, along with other local authorities in the capital, asked Environment Minister Phil Hogan to consider the move.

The councils want to see an amendment to section 22 of the Litter Pollution Act to make it an offence for a person in control of a dog not to have a scoop.

In reply, Mr Hogan told the city authority that, if and when it is decided to amend the law, the proposal will be taken into consideration.

Litter prevention officer with the council Bernie Lillis revealed: "Dublin City Council in conjunction with a number of other neighbouring local authorities forwarded a number of amendments to the Litter Pollution Act to the minister.

"Included in that was to amend section 22 so that the person in control of a dog should at all times carry a means of disposal of dog faeces.

"On a number of occasions, when the dog owner or the person in control of the dog was approached by a litter warden, they didn't even have anything with them (to clean the mess) so it is important that they should at least carry some means of disposal with them at all times."

Section 22 of the act makes it an offence for a person in control of a dog not to clean up after the animal.

However, the local authorities want to go a step further and make it illegal not to have a pooper scooper, whether or not the dog has littered. On-the-spot fines for contravening the section currently stand at €150.

Ms Lillis was speaking at a meeting of the city's environment and engineering strategic policy committee.

comurphy@herald.ie