PRESENTED as “a major advance in environmental enforcement”, a new software module from Imperial Civil Enforcement Solutions (ICES) is being used by Community Safety Glasgow (CSG) to maximise the effectiveness of its drive to address litter and dog fouling issues across the city. Providing dedicated real-time support for a team of 65 community enforcement officers, the new solution from Imperial Civil Enforcement Solutions (ICES) is said to provide effective management of Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) data to help CSG tackle littering.
The new Environmental Enforcement software module from ICES is based on the company’s 3sixty enforcement system and has seemingly transformed the issuing and processing of around 20,000 Fixed Penalty Notices a year in Scotland’s largest city. Hosted by ICES at its Northampton operational centre, it provides “a totally integrated environmental enforcement management solution for CSG”, including automated telephone and online payment options as well as all other forms of payment.
Real-time postcode lookup allows a community enforcement officer to verify supplied information and validate the address provided by an offender. This helps ensure accuracy of data entry at the time a FPN is issued. Significantly, the new system provides detailed insight and management data so that resources can be managed in accordance with prevailing trends and operational priorities.
Configured to reflect the latest legislation
The progression paths for each FPN also take full account of all relevant legislation and the age and status of an offender. For Community Safety Glasgow, for example, the system has been configured to reflect The 1990 Environmental Protection Act and The Dog Fouling (Scotland) Act 2003, although the design of the ticket enables all FPNs to be printed on the same ticket roll.
CSG were committed to a solution which would address the shortcomings of manual data entry onto excel spreadsheets. The new system provided by ICES has minimised administrative tasks and reduced the potential for errors, says the firm. It can also handle the issuing of retrospective postal FPNs. This is particularly useful when complaints are received about persistent dog fouling and where CSG are subsequently able to identify the animal’s owner.
Support for ‘hot spots’
Using 3sixty, CSG is now able to use intelligence and extract management information so that particular ‘hot spots’ can be targeted and to provide tactical support for major events or to address any specific incidents in and around the city. This has apparently given added impetus to CSG’s public liaison and ambassadorial role which, consequently, has helped to provide further reassurance for local communities and members of the public.
A report published recently by Zero Waste Scotland says in excess of 15,000 tonnes of litter is cleared by local authorities annually and that it costs an astonishing £46million of public money to clear up litter and fly tipping in the country every year (excluding other indirect costs estimated to be in excess of more than £25million).
Choice of handheld
CSG worked closely with ICES to refine and test the new software and training provided by the firm ensured the ‘go live’ period went smoothly. Although the software is just as effective on Samsung Smartphones, CSG opted for the Casio DTX30 handheld terminals for environmental enforcement, as the units are also used by 120 colleagues in Glasgow City Council’s Parking Department. As well as data validation and the issuing of FPNs, the terminals also enable urgent messages to be relayed to patrolling officers.
CSG is also considering how the handhelds can be used in the future to provide an easy means to record and report other incidents of environmental incivility – such as drug debris, graffiti and fly posting – so that appropriate action can be taken without delay. In addition,
Community Safety Glasgow is now trialling the use of the ICES GeoSmarti computer mapping solution to track enforcement activities and safeguard patrolling Community Enforcement Officers.