PLANS to charge event organisers and spend the cash to clean up the open spaces they use has been rejected.

Green councillors on Brighton and Hove City Council’s tourism committee argued that private events coming to the city should contribute more to the community and the environment.

But Labour councillors voted against Green proposals for an events fee policy.

Green councillors Tom Druitt and Phelim MacCafferty said other councils including Haringey and Oxford levied an “environmental impact charge” to pay for damage caused by large-scale events.

This includes clearing large amounts of non- recyclable waste and repairing damage to parks.

They said a similar charge should be introduced in Brighton, with the funding ringfenced to support the many “friends of” associations who help to maintain the city’s parks and open spaces.

Cllr MacCafferty said profit-making festivals on Hove Lawns could be charging double the cost of the fee paid to the council to run just one stall, while measures to ensure the parks were returned to their original state were clearly not working.

Speaking after the meeting, Green spokesman for tourism Cllr Druitt said: “Residents have raised a number of concerns about some of the events held in the city, ranging from the direct impact in terms of noise, rubbish and the closure of footpaths and cycle paths to the cumulative impact of the events on our parks and open spaces.

“It is a crying shame that Labour voted against our proposals to address these issues, seemingly for no reason other than because they were Green proposals.”

Councillor MacCafferty sad the city should be “not curtailing community or arts events but also not being completely ripped off by events which are run solely for profit for someone else”.

Councillor Robert Nemeth, Conservative, said his party backed the request to consider the plans because “there would have been plenty of scope further down the line to agree the details” and there was “no reason to kill it at the committee”.

Councillor Kevin Allen, Labour, said: “It was a very complicated amendment, a huge document and we simply didn’t have time to consider it properly.

“I suggested to Cllr Druitt that rather than push this to a vote he leave it with us and the good ideas would be taken into account.

“But he rather dogmatically pushed it to a vote and we said reluctantly we would have to vote against because it was a huge complicated amendment and we couldn’t agree to all of it.”