Pausing graffiti enforcement for small businesses

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We’re changing how we tackle graffiti and tagging offences in the city.

Small businesses are no longer subject to a fine when they have failed to clean graffiti from their premises.

The decision to pause enforcement action against small businesses was made by the City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee in June when councillors agreed it was unfair to penalise victims of graffiti.

From 7 August, our environmental enforcement team will write to small businesses advising them on dealing with and managing tagging offences.

Enforcement for larger businesses

Larger businesses, including those with a regional or national presence, and ‘statutory undertakers’ are still required to remove graffiti from their property or face a fine.

Statutory undertakers are organisations responsible for electricity, gas, water, telecoms and highways in the city such as Network Rail and BT.

Community Protection Warnings (CPW), Community Protection Notices (CPN) and Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN) will be issued to encourage larger businesses to remove tagging.

Further information on how to protect your property from illegal graffiti and tagging can be found on our what to do about graffiti webpage.

Reviewing the Graffiti Reduction Strategy

We’re carrying out a review of the Graffiti Reduction Strategy, which focuses on four key areas – prevention, enforcement, removal and monitoring and reviewing.

Since the strategy was agreed in 2018, we’ve introduced CPWs, CPNs and FPNs, expanded our enforcement team and organised joint patrols and worked closely with Sussex Police.

A proposal to the City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee in September will seek permission to start a consultation on refreshing the Graffiti Reduction Strategy.

If approved, we’ll be keen to hear from residents and businesses how they think we can continue to improve tackling problem graffiti in the city.

Supporting our efforts to keep the city clean

Councillor Tim Rowkins, Chair of the City Environment, South Downs and The Sea Committee, said: “From today, we’ll send letters asking small businesses to clean tags from their property and advising them how best to deter taggers in the future, but they won’t be threatened with a fine.

“It seemed unfair to penalise local small businesses who might already be struggling financially, when they were already the victims of vandalism.

“We believe that small business-owners will continue to be responsible and remove graffiti from their property in a timely manner.

“Keeping walls, shutters and shopfronts clear and clean deters offenders and we encourage all businesses across Brighton & Hove to help us in the battle against tagging offences.

“We know that businesses around the city will support our efforts to keep the city clean.”

Reporting graffiti in the city

If you see hate-based or offensive graffiti or stickering, please report it though our environmental enforcement hotline on 01273 295 063 or our online request a clean-up form.

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