The leader of Peterborough City Council said he was “disappointed” and “frustrated” that his promised clampdown on illegal Bridge Street cycling was put on hold at the last minute.
Council leader Councillor John Holdich had promised that council staff would ticket all cyclists illegally pedalling on Bridge Street when they received fining powers for the first time.
But despite those Community Safety Accreditation Scheme powers coming into force on Monday, the council has discovered it is still not allowed to hand out fixed penalty notices because Bridge Street cycling is classed as a road traffic offence, which only the police can enforce.
Cllr Holdich, who had told the Peterborough Telegraph he wanted a zero tolerance approach against illegal Bridge Street cycling, was only told there was a problem on Friday.
He is now expecting it to be up to another two months until the rules are changed so council staff can ticket Bridge Street cyclists.
The council leader said: “I’ve made no secret with officers that I’m very disappointed that we are not in a position for the council staff to affect the cycling in Bridge Street, but police still have those powers and will be working with our folks to issue tickets.”
Council staff are part of the city’s Prevention and Enforcement Service (PES) which re-launched on Monday. The PES combines council, police, fire service and prison staff, with council staff using their new powers now able to hand out fines for several offences including littering and begging.
Cllr Holdich said he had listened to residents’ concerns, adding: “I believe that our new approach will play a part in tackling concerns like fly-tipping and littering as well as working to prevent issues such as drug dealing and child sexual exploitation.”
The new-look PES is made up of 112 officers including 16 police constables, 30 police community support officers and 30 council prevention and enforcement officers.
It will be split up to cover three localities across the whole city council area which are classed as Eastern, Southern and Northern.
On Monday officers took part in several activities, including city centre patrols to target anti-social behaviour and aggressive begging and patrols in Woodston to target issues such as drug dealing and illegal parking.
They also visited houses in multiple occupancy to check on the safety of residents.