New powers will help tackle dodgy scrap metal dealers in Newham

Newham Council has introduced new legislation to help it tackle dodgy scrap metal dealers.

Councillors approved delegated authority to be given to council officers so they can enforce a new national law, the Scrap Dealers Metal Act, which came into effect at the beginning of October.

The borough currently has about 40 premises registered for scrap metal but the council believes there could be many more under the radar.

The Act will allow the council to create a more robust licensing system, which will support legitimate dealers while providing tough powers to tackle the rogues.

It will also allow the council to decide who should be licensed. Newham can refuse an application for a licence or revoke it at any time if the applicants are thought to be unsuitable. The new Act brings in closure powers. The legislation also requires dealers to keep proper records and verification of the people they are doing business with.

The new Act will combine separate regulations for motor salvage operators (MSOs) with scrap dealers. MSOs will now be classified as scrap metal dealers and need a licence.

Councillor Ian Corbett, Newham Council’s executive member for infrastructure and environment, said: “While we want to work with the good operators, these new powers will give us the ability to target and weed out the rogues. They have no place in Newham.

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“Crime and anti-social behaviour in Newham is never acceptable under any circumstances and we are doing everything we can to combat it for the benefit of our residents.”