A litterpicker responsible for keeping Northampton town centre clean has been fined... for dropping litter.
A streetcleaner from Veolia, which is contracted by the borough council, was seen tossing a cigarette butt on the pavement. An eye-witness said it looked like he was dropping it for his bin cart to scoop up.
But he was seen by an enforcement officer from Kingdom Ltd, also hired by the borough council to fine litterbugs, who handed him a £60 fixed penalty.
Members of the public saw the two borough council contractors having a heated back-and-forth on Mercers Row on Tuesday, during which two police officers also got involved in the dispute.
Cabinet member for environment Mike Hallam said: “Kingdom enforcement officers observed the Veolia operative dropping a cigarette butt...as such, he was issued with a fixed penalty notice, which he will be expected to pay and his supervisor has been made aware.
"We take a no tolerance approach to anyone caught deliberately dropping litter, irresepective of who they are and who they work for.”
Kingdom have been responsible for environmental enforcement in Northampton since January and use body cameras to issue on-the-spot fines to litterers around town. Their patrols around the town centre saw 2,218 fixed penalty notices given within the first two months of the year.
Veolia took up the contract for cleaning and maintaining Northampton in June. One of their flagship promises was a three-month "deep clean" to kick off their tenure.