Clearing litter, fly-tipping, discarded chewing gum and dog muck costs Highland Council taxpayers about £2.5million per year.
The statistic from council leader Michael Foxley surfaced in a debate in Inverness yesterday, after which councillors decided to review the policing of the problems.
Dr Foxley told a meeting of the housing and social work committee in Inverness that a substantial sum of money would be saved, streets would be cleaner and the environment improved if the authority could crack the problem of educating people. “I want a litter-free Highlands, so that it’s really obvious when you cross the border,” he said. “I’ve experienced that in North America.
“When you cross a border into a state which has the anti-litter signs up and there is literally not a shred of litter anywhere because, presumably, people were fined heavily at the beginning of the process and the word caught on.
“In Canada and North American states they’re fined $500 and $1,000 for litter.”