Clean and Green Strategy
Residents of Hartlepool are being urged to help shape a strategy for making the town cleaner and greener.
Hartlepool Council has launched an on-line consultation to enable people to comment on its draft Clean and Green Strategy for the town.
The strategy – the finalised version of which will run from 2017-2020 and be supported by an annual action plan - sets out the Council’s vision for clean and well maintained streets, parks, other green spaces and highways.
Councillor Marjorie James, Chair of the Neighbourhood Services Committee, said: “Cleanliness and the quality of the environment are recognised as factors which have a direct impact on how residents feel about their local area. Indeed, the Council’s recent “Your Say, Our Future” public consultation exercise reaffirmed the importance of the local environment to residents and highlighted the need for the community and the Council to work together to improve the town and reduce demand on services.
“Many of our clean and green services are demand-led. Whilst much of this demand is inevitable, some of it is also avoidable and we need to address the behaviour of a minority of residents whose actions have a disproportionate effect on Council resources and expenditure.
“This is perhaps best illustrated in the cleansing service where negative and irresponsible behaviour such as dropping litter in the street or allowing a dog to foul a public area without cleaning up the mess has significant resource and cost implications for the Council. In 2015/16, for example, our litter-picking and fly-tipping squads collected 1,832 tonnes of rubbish, a weight equivalent to 145 double-decker buses.
“The need to manage demand for services is all the more important when you consider that on-going Government cuts mean that in the current financial year the Council is receiving £35 million (55%) less in funding than it did in 2010/11.”
Council Marjorie James and Hartlepool Council's Garry Jones pictured at one the town's popular wildflower meadows.
Councillor James added that improving the local environment would also boost the town’s economy by attracting greater numbers of visitors and more inward investment, leading to new job opportunities.
And she said the provision of good quality, well maintained public open spaces and green areas would benefit local people in terms of their physical and mental well-being by enabling them to take part in a range of healthy outdoor pursuits and escape the stresses of urban living.
As well as continuing to work with a range of partners and existing volunteers, the Council aims to encourage “active citizenship” within local communities and the draft strategy includes a proposal to develop a new Charter outlining how all parties need to work together to achieve a more pleasant environment.
The on-line consultation, which runs until January 2, can be accessed by clicking here.
It is anticipated that the second draft of the strategy which will include comments received during the current consultation period, will be presented to the Neighbourhood Services Committee in January for approval. Following further consultation on the second draft, the final strategy will be presented to the committee in March before being submitted to Full Council for consideration in April.