We are always willing to provide a platform to those people who bring us new insights and a different perspective on matters we think are important for the people of Wirral to know about . In that respect Wirral Leaks is everything that Wirral View isn’t . Our latest contributor – ‘Jiminy Cricket’ is from the business community and just before we hand over to him we just thought we’d advise that the letter from Wirral Council’s ‘Lead Commissioner -Environment’ is signed by Mike Cockburn and alas, not as it appears to be, Cockbum – which would have been a gift.
Another nail in the coffin for Wirral Business Owners.
In another desperate attempt to pick the pockets of local business owners, Fagin, the Chief Pickpocket has identified a new wheeze which will punish business owners and fill the coffers of the Treasury.
Business across Wirral will see a letter from Wirral Council drop onto their doormat over the coming weeks. Some have already received them. The letter looks like a piece of junk mail with a leaflet attached to it but it carries an ominous warning about non-compliance which could result in a £300 Fixed Penalty Notice.
The letter in question tells business owners about their obligations regarding disposal of business waste. It warns them they need to keep written information relating to all business waste for a period of two years and must make these documents available for inspection by autorised officers of the council or the Environment Agency when required to do so. Failure to produce the written information when asked will result in a Fixed Penalty Notice.
This unassuming letter should strike fear into the heart of every business owner in Wirral. Clearly it is the first salvo in an orchestrated attack to hit as many businesses as possible with the Fixed Penalty Notice mentioned in the letter. They are an easy target too because even a person working from home can be affected. Anything can be classed as business waste which means any business owner can be targeted and hit with a £300 Fixed penalty Notice.
WikiPedia has this to say on the subject of Fixed Penalty Notices:
“Fixed penalty notices (FPNs) were introduced in Britain in the 1950s to deal with minor parking offences. Originally used by police and traffic wardens, their use has extended to other public officials and authorities, as has the range of offences for which they can be used.
In recent years, this has taken the form of using them to give police and public authorities in England, Scotland and Wales a realistic weapon against anti-
social behaviour. They are designed to reduce paperwork on police and council officers by allowing low-level anti-social behaviour to be dealt with on the
spot. Newer types of notice exist for disorder, environmental crime, truancy and noise. A fixed penalty notice is not a fine or criminal conviction and
the recipient can opt for the matter to be dealt with in court instead of paying. However, if the recipient neither pays the penalty nor opts for a court
hearing in the time specified, the penalty may be increased by 50% and registered against the recipient as a fine. It may then be enforced by the normal
methods used to enforce unpaid fines, including imprisonment in some circumstances.”It seems questionable how a local authority which already charges for Business Rates and high parking, not to mention the dubious BID Levy (in some areas),
is gearing up to issue Fixed Penalty Notices on already hard pressed business owners. It is clear a lot of small firms are already struggling and may not be
able to afford the £300 Fixed Penalty Notice. It could be the proverbial straw which breaks the camels back and could result in businesses closing down or at
the very least being hauled into court and criminalised for not paying the Fixed Penalty Notice.Clearly Fagin, the chief pickpocket at Wirral Council and his (or her) team of crooked acolytes are not only intent of grasping hold of the hard earned cash of business owners in Wirral, they are too dim to realise it will drive away small business innovation and investment in Wirral. Or they simply just do not care because most of them are highly paid and do not live in Wirral anyway.
You heard it here first everyone. Since it is Halloween this month – Be afraid, Be very afraid.