Written Reply by Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, to Parliamentary Question on Fines for Not Returning Trays
Ms Yeo Wan Ling: To ask the Minister for Sustainability and the Environment (a) how many people have been issued fines for not returning their trays in hawker centres since 1 September 2021; (b) how many of these fines have been imposed on patrons of zhi char and steamboat eating places; (c) what are examples of situations where enforcers have taken on "pragmatic approaches" for stalls with dedicated service staff who serve food and clear tables.
1 Since 1st September this year, the National Environment Agency (NEA) has started enforcing against table littering in hawker centresfollowing a three-month advisory period. For diners who do not clear their dirty trays, crockery, and litter, enforcement officers will first advise them to do so. Diners who refuse to heed officers' advice will have their particulars taken down and issued written warnings if it is their first offence. Only second and subsequent offenders will be issued fines or be sent to Court.
2 From 1st to 10th September, our enforcement officers advised an average of about 650 diners per day across 110 hawker centres to clear their tables. The vast majority complied. No fines have been issued as yet, but NEA has taken down the particulars of one diner who did not heed advice and will be issuing him a warning letter.
3 For Zi Char stalls that use specialised, bulky crockery, stallholders will have their stall assistants, who serve the food to the tables, or the cleaners assist in collecting these bulky crockery after diners finish their meal. Diners will need to clear the rest of the dirty crockery and table litter. We have observed that most diners have been able to do so.
4 To make it more convenient for diners to return their dirty crockery and trays, NEA is installing 150 new tray and crockery return racks at hawker centres, on top of the 900 existing racks. NEA will also be progressively introducing 300 tray and crockery return trolleys that can be easily deployed at convenient locations within easy walking distance of diners.