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Wrexham Council face fresh calls to cancel controversial Kingdom contract

NOTE: This content is old - Published: Friday, Aug 17th, 2018.

Opposition councillors have called for the immediate scrapping of the use of a controversial enforcement firm amid allegations it is operating in breach of its contract.

Plaid Cymru councillors have called on Wrexham Council to ditch its use of Kingdom, who are contracted to issue Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) for litter dropping and dog fouling across the county borough.

Kingdom have operated in Wrexham since April 2016, when Wrexham Council began a 12 month trial service in a bid to reduce littering and dog fouling.

Following the trial period the company was re-appointed last April on a further two year deal.

However Wrexham Council are the only local authority in Wales to still be contracted to the company after Kingdom announced it would be ending its work in Flintshire, Denbighshire and Conwy from mid-August.

There has been pressure from some quarters for Wrexham Council to bin-off its contract with Kingdom since it was introduced in 2016. However senior councillors have stood firm with the ‘zero tolerance’ approach taken by the company when issuing FPNs for litter and dog fouling.

Now there are fresh pressures on the council to scrap its contract, with Plaid Cymru group leader, Cllr Marc Jones, claiming the company are breaking its contract with Wrexham Council due to having just one operative in the area, rather than two to four.

Cllr Marc Jones, who last month moved a motion rejected by the Executive Board to cancel its contract with Kingdom, said: “We have had confirmation from a council officer that Kingdom is not meeting the terms of the contract, which stipulates that it has between two and four operatives working in the borough.

“They company says that, due to ‘recruitment issues’ and ‘staff leaving’, there is just one operative left.

“As that is breaking the contract the company has with Wrexham Council, the contract should be terminated with the 28-day notice period.”

Councillor David A Bithell, lead member for environment and transport, said: “We are aware of the concerns raised by elected members and the people of Wrexham and in response the council have set up a Task and Finish group to consider the future delivery of enforcement services.

“The Group has met and I would like to thank them for their time on this matter so far.

“The Group is made up of all political parties and we are awaiting their outcomes and findings and everyone should be assured we will consider their recommendations in due course.

“In the meantime, Plaid Cymru are fully aware that we have a procurement team that manage all contracts on behalf of Wrexham Council.”

We have contacted Kingdom for further information and are awaiting further comment.

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