lIllegally dumped rubbish in rural areas is on the rise in Hastings following the Christmas and New Year season and the clean-up is costing ratepayers thousands of dollars.
Hastings District Council's waste minimisation officer, Dominic Salmon, said areas on the fringes of the city appear to be the most popular places for people to dump their rubbish, according to reports the council had received in recent weeks.
"The practice of residents randomly dumping their rubbish on the roadside is becoming greater each year and it's got to stop," he said.
"Not only does it create an eyesore but the cost of cleaning up the mess is borne by our ratepayers."
Incidents of illegal dumping had been cleared recently from Tollemache, Kaiapo and Irongate roads but many other rural roads were regularly being used as rubbish dumps.
Mr Salmon said one of the most frustrating aspects of this type of dumping was that a lot of the material which was left on the side of the road could be recycled free at a transfer station or at a recycling centre.
A council contractor recently removed a trailer-load of glass bottles and cardboard from a roadside drain.
"Anyone who is identified or caught in the act of dumping rubbish on the roadside runs the risk of being fined between $100 and $400. Council has issued 30 infringement notices in the past 12 months for illegal dumping," Mr Salmon said.
"We ask that rural residents in particular remain vigilant and report any illegally dumped rubbish as soon as possible. We will clear it up as quickly as we can but we would rather that everyone takes responsibility and deposits their rubbish at a transfer station or uses council's street collection."
Fines for disposal of waste in a public place or on private land in Hastings without the occupier's consent include $100 for depositing litter of less than 1 litre by volume, examples include takeaway container or contents of a car ash tray.
There is a $200 fine for litter from 1 to 20 litres of rubbish dumped on roadsides and examples include a 1.5-litre plastic container, a single disposable nappy or placing household rubbish bags or accumulated car waste in public litter bins.
There is a $300 fine for dumped litter on roadsides from 20 to 120 litres and examples include household or green waste.
There is a $400 for dumping 120 litres of rubbish on the roadside, depositing dangerous litter, commercial waste, multiple disposable nappies, car parts or glass, e-waste or animal remains.