RESIDENTS can now have their say on controversial proposals to introduce an anti-begging order in a town centre.
Fareham Borough Council launched a public consultation yesterday to gather residents’ views on the local authority potentially introducing a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) in Fareham town centre.
We have had a great deal of concerns from residents recently about incidents of anti-social behaviour and we’ve been looking at ways to do something aboutCouncillor Trevor Cartwright
The proposals have already been met with concerns from councillors as they would see police officers and authorised council officers given powers to issue £100 fines for people carrying out anti-social behaviour such as street drinking and begging within the centre’s boundaries.
Councillor Trevor Cartwright, the council’s executive member for public protection, said: ‘We have had a great deal of concerns from residents recently about incidents of anti-social behaviour and we’ve been looking at ways to do something about it.
‘This is why we are launching this consultation, to gather the public’s thoughts and see what they recommend.
Councillor Shaun Cunningham opposes the introduction of the order as he says it is ‘over the top’ as police already have the power to deal with anti-social behaviour in the town.
He said: ‘We absolutely need to tackle anti-social behaviour in the town centre.
‘It is absolutely a problem and it needs to be dealt with, but this order is over the top.
‘I fully understand our police force is under enormous strain at the moment but they should be tackling this.’
Currently, the order would only apply to Fareham’s town centre, however, fears had been raised at a previous council meeting that it would push the problems elsewhere in the borough to Locks Heath or Portchester.
The order would allow officers to stop people engaging in anti-social behaviour.
Officers can request the surrender of any alcohol a street drinker may have on them.
Further failure to comply with the PSPO after the £100 fine could lead to a further fine of £1,000 on conviction.
Residents can take part in the survey at fareham.gov.uk/consultations up until Tuesday, September 27.
A paper copy can be collected from the Civic Offices.