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Public Spaces Protection Order

The Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) came into force on 1st May 2016. The new powers replace and add to previous powers for dog control and antisocial behaviour in East Herts.

We are inviting local people and key stakeholders to have their say on our plans to vary and extend the Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in East Herts.

What are PSPOs?

The current restrictions were introduced in 2016 to deal with a range of issues including dog fouling, excluding dogs from certain areas (such as play areas) and restrictions to deal with emerging anti-social behaviour trends at that time. A PSPO can be made for a maximum duration of up to three years, after which it may be extended, varied of discharged for up to a further 3 years.

If anyone fails to meet the requirements of the PSPO or to comply with a request from a police office, police community support officer (PCSO) or authorised council officer, they could be issued with a Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) of up to £100 or prosecuted. However, these measures are designed to deal with extremes of anti-social behaviour and authorised officers will take a proportionate and common sense approach in their application.

Read the  The Public Spaces Protection Order (East Hertfordshire District Council) 2016 [953KB]  for more information.

Proposed variation, extension and discharge of current restrictions

East Herts Council has worked with the Police and partners to review current restrictions in place to ensure they are still proportionate and effective. The proposals include extending the dog control restrictions by another 3 years and varying these to include some parish council play areas and open spaces.

It is also proposed that the restrictions relating to anti-social behaviour will be discharged and removed from the order. This is after careful consideration and evaluation of their use. There are a range of other measures to deal with individuals involved in anti-social behaviour that can be more effective and targeted in terms of addressing the identified problems.

It is proposed to vary and extend the current PSPO by 3 years for the following:

1. Dog fouling - the extension of the existing provision that makes it an offence if a person in charge of a dog fails to clean up its faeces.

2. Dogs on leads when directed - the extension of the existing provision that makes it an offence for failing to put a dog on a lead when directed to do so by an authorised officer.

3. Dogs on leads in specified areas - the extension of the existing provision that makes it an offence to not have a dog on a lead in all East Herts Council owned allotments.

Proposed Variation: To incorporate additional locations as specified in Schedule 1.

4. Dog exclusion in specified areas - the extension of the existing provision that makes it an offence to allow a dog onto East Herts Council owned land which have been designated to exclude dogs:

  • All fenced children's playgrounds and areas which are designated and marked for children's play
  • All fenced games areas e.g. tennis, ball courts, skate parks
  • All bowling greens
  • Marked playing pitches - when in use for playing sports

Proposed Variation: To incorporate additional locations as specified in Schedule 1.

5. Walking more than four (4) dogs - the extension of the existing provision that makes it an offence for an individual to take more than four (4) dogs onto any East Herts Council owned land at any one time.

6. Failing to produce a receptacle for picking up dog faeces - the extension of the existing provision which would require dog walkers to carry a poop bag or other means for clearing up after their pet.

A list of sites with current dog control restrictions and proposed new measures can be found within the   SCHEDULE 1 List of areas for dog control measures under the PSPO [56KB] document

It is proposed to discharge and remove the following offences from the current PSPO:

  1. Using a mechanically propelled vehicle in a disorderly or anti-social manner.

    Proposed change: to remove this provision from the PSPO.

  2. Failing to surrender possession when asked of new psycho active substances (commonly known as legal highs) or drug that is not alcohol or tobacco on any land within the District.

    Proposed change: to remove this provision from the PSPO.

  3. Prohibition of alcohol consumption in five (5) designated areas.

    Proposed change: to remove this provision from the PSPO.

  4. Shouting swearing, screaming or making any unnecessary noise in a disorderly or anti-social manner in area where alcohol restrictions are in place.

    Proposed change: to remove this provision from the PSPO.

East Herts Community Safety Partnership continues to work in collaboratively to ensure the district remains a safe place to live, work and visit. The previous PSPO conditions were imposed as agencies felt they were needed to address those issues. However, experience has shown that other, more specific legislative tools within the ASB Crime and Policing Act 2014 are proving more effective.

The CSP recognises that a blanket wide PSPO is not needed as the majority of residents and visitors are law abiding citizens. Instead the CSP wants to focus its resources and attention on those who do not and take the most appropriate action against them. Agencies continually monitor crime trends and data and should there be an evidential need for a PSPO then this would be considered and consultation taken. In addition, agencies are also looking at ways to improve engagement with communities to help set priorities. By improving this engagement agencies will be able to take the most appropriate action; which on occasion could be a PSPO but one that is proportionate and specific to an area rather than a district wide one. Should you wish to be involved in priority setting please email community.safety@eastherts.gov.uk

Maps of the current and extended Designated Public Place Orders can be found within the Schedule 2 – Maps of current Designated Public Place Orders [10MB] document

You can view a copy of the draft Public Spaces Protection Order Public Spaces Protection Order [67KB]

PSPO Consultation:

The survey is now closed.

For more information on dog fouling and measures to tackle irresponsible dog owners read our page on Dog Fouling & Dog Control.

More information about anti-social behaviour is available on our Anti Social Behaviour page.

Next steps:

All comments and feedback from the consultation and survey questionnaire will be considered before the PSPO is varied and extended. It is proposed the variations will commence from 1 May 2019. Further information on the implementation of the new PSPO will be posted on the council's website and in Link magazine.

Once implemented the PSPO will remain in place for three (3) years after which it can be renewed. The PSPO can also be varied at any time within this period.

Want to know more about PSPOs?

Information about Public Spaces Protection Orders can be found in section 2.6 of the Home Office document  Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014: Reform of anti-social behaviour powers

 

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