MORE than three quarters of rubbish fly-tipped in Croydon is now being cleared within 48 hours.
The 78 per cent clear-up rate was hailed by council leader Tony Newman as positive evidence that the Labour administration's key "Don't Mess with Croydon" policy is working.
And he made it plain, as the new administration completes its first 100 days in power today (Friday), that there would be no let up in the fight to clean Croydon's streets.
Cllr Newman said: "The thing we really understand now is the sheer scale of the problem.
"There is a huge challenge in terms of keeping the streets clean and the message going out is about making a culture change aimed at some people within the population.
"Fly-tipping has to be socially unacceptable."
The leader stressed the council would not hold back from prosecuting offenders and seeking the "highest possible penalties."
Alongside the overall education programme, Cllr Newman said the council was also working with its waste contractor, Veolia, to improve its performance.
He said changes to shift patterns were being examined and refuse collectors and street cleaners were being encouraged to report fly-tipping incidents quickly, to allow clean-up crews to get out as soon as possible.
Cllr Newman said he believed the administration had "hit the ground running" in its first 100 days, citing as another of its key successes the move to make Croydon a London Living Wage council for its staff.
He was hopeful the message coming from the council would be picked up by many private companies and public sector organisations.
Cllr Newman said tough negotiations were also being held with council contractors to bring them into the London Living Wage fold, paying £8.80 an hour.
He said: "We believe it should be the absolute minimum for anybody to be able to afford to live here."
Cllr Newman listed plans to introduce a licensing system for private landlords, to help ensure decent home standards for their tenants, as a further achievement of his first 100 days.
And he said the council was also working closely with the Greater London Authority and Transport for London (TfL), adding: "Working with the mayor and TfL is fundamental if we are going to deliver regeneration."