It is completely unacceptable that there are currently only 3 Environmental Wardens to cover County Wicklow. These wardens must deal with a wide range of tasks such as waste management, packaging and site inspections of facilities, and provision of waste collection permits. Due to the current embargo on renewing contracts we are left in a situation where the Environmental wardens simply cannot effectively cover an area as large as County Wicklow.
However, it is the institutional barriers that must be urgently addressed so that dog fouling, which is a blight on County Wicklow, can be tackled. Currently, both a dog warden and a litter warden must be present, together to issue fines. This situation is completely ridiculous and is preventing the environmental section of Wicklow County Council from dealing with this problem.
I have asked Wicklow County Council to erect signs, bins and provide “pooper scoops” in the Greystones to give pet owners every possible convenience when cleaning up after their pets. Specifically I have asked that these be provided along the R774 which caters for large numbers of pet walkers from Charlesland, Eden Gate and the surrounding area. I have also asked that they be provided at the sea front, the harbour area, and in Burnaby Park in Greystones.
I commend the large number of pet owners who take responsibility and clean up after their pets. It is a small minority of owners who do not take due consideration of others and it is these people who must be fined for not cleaning up after their pets.