Illegal rubbish dumpers should be forced to clean up other people's junk as part of their punishment, Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says.
Goff posted an angry message on Facebook after discovering a pile of tyres dumped on the side of the road early this morning, saying the "clowns that do this sort of illegal dumping need to be prosecuted".
He suspected the dumper was a commercial operator, judging by the number of tyres.
"At my instruction council has given higher priority to catching offenders. Recent prosecutions have resulted in heavy fines, home detention and in one case deportation," he said.
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"We are issuing more penalties and the rate of dumping has reduced but it is still happening."
Illegal tyre dumping is an ongoing issue for Auckland. In one of the worst cases, last year it took three days to clean up more than 1000 tyres from a ravine in Clevedon, a notorious commercial dumping site.
Goff said he was asking the Government to change the law so that offenders would be forced to clean up the rubbish that other people had dumped, as part of their sentence.
The alternative would be a "product stewardship scheme" in which the cost of recycling a tyre would be incorporated into the purchase price.
Disposal of tyres would then be free, making it less likely they would be dumped.