Starting in July, people who place “poorly managed or unattended” potted plants in public areas will be fined between NT$1,200 to NT$6,000, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) said yesterday. However, the EPA did not unveil clear guidelines as to the definition of “poorly managed” or whom the administration would fine if there were problems finding the plant’s owner.
“From March to June, the EPA’s inspection squad will patrol residential areas and ask anyone who places unsightly potted plants in public areas — such as sidewalks — to either clean up the plants or dispose of them. Starting on July 1, those who have been asked but fail to do so will face fines of between NT$1,200 and NT$6,000,” said Yuan Shaw-ying (袁紹英), director-general of the EPA Department of Environmental Sanitation and Toxic Substance Management.
In cases where no apparent owner can be found, a warning slip will be attached, he said. If no one claims the plant, it would be disposed of based on the Waste Disposal Act (廢棄物清理法).
Yuan said that the regulations would apply to those with unsightly or poorly managed plants, adding: “Other people do not need to worry about it. [Those who have offending plants] will be very clear on the matter, as it is easy to define whether a plant is well-managed.”
Plants with cracked pots, those that leak and dead plants would fit into the offending category, he said, adding that owners of plants that block traffic or occupy public sidewalks would also be penalized. Yuan said the regulation would only target plants in public areas.
“People can go home and read over their landholding certificates to make sure which parts are privately owned and which aren’t. We will not fine people whose plants are on private property,” he said.
The goal of the effort is two-fold, Yuan said.
“Not only can we clean up our cities, we can reduce mosquito-borne diseases, such as dengue fever,” he said.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung