My business has been issued with a fine of £600 for recycling one cardboard box and one plastic bottle in a recycling bin, which Brighton & Hove Council say is not for business use.
My business generates virtually no waste as we re-use almost all boxes and packaging to pack and ship our orders. As a result of my environmentally sound practices we therefore generate around one cardboard box a week and one 5 litre plastic bottle a fortnight.
Periodically, this waste is taken to Brighton & Hove Council's main Recycling Centre. If that is closed the waste has been put in the Council's other recycling bins. However, the Council says my business needs to join a commercial recycling scheme, at a cost of £338 a year and my box and bottle should have been recycled via this scheme.
The Council issued no warning letter when they found my recycling and there is no information given to small businesses on what they are obliged to do when recycling waste. They issued a £600 fine which will increase to four-fold if I do not pay up. I am determined to fight this in court, but as a small business with a limited amount of resources, we are not in a position to pay over £2,000 in fines and court costs.
I want to make a stand against the council regarding the proportionality of fines and because the council seems to be constantly fining unsuspecting small businesses in Brighton & Hove.