People power cuts green waste costs

This Is Wiltshire: Coun Richard Hurley, the Cabinet member for housing and public protection and street smart at Waterside Recycling Centre Coun Richard Hurley, the Cabinet member for housing and public protection and street smart at Waterside Recycling Centre

A FLOOD of responses to Swindon Council’s changes to green waste and recycling collections successfully forced the authority to drop the green waste charge by £30.

The town-wide proposals were approved by council bosses at a cabinet meeting on Wednesday night after 6,000 people responded to a public consultation.

Swindon Council’s cabinet heard this was one of the biggest participations in a consultation the authority has experienced.

Under the proposals, people’s recycling, which includes plastic, paper and tins, will be picked up once every two weeks – putting £520,000 back into the council’s kitty by reducing refuse vans and the number of contractual staff paid for by the council.

And residents will no longer have green plastic bags for their green waste but will pay £40 as an annual fee for a green wheelie bin. This has been brought down from the original proposal which was £70 for the first year. The charge will claw back £635,000 for the council.

People who responded to the consultation were mainly aged 45 to 63, with this group making up 43 per cent overall. The big concerns raised about plans for the green waste included the feeling the original charge of £70 was too high, the charge was unfair and regressive and the service should already be provided through council taxes.

In total 33 per cent said the charges were unacceptable, 24 per cent said they had no objection and eight per cent said they could use the service but were unwilling to.

About 75 per cent of people said changes to the recycling were welcomed, with nine per cent saying they only recycle fortnightly anyway. Six per cent of people said they thought it would increase the amount of litter in the streets.

“We have listened to what people were saying, they thought the £70 fee was too high, so we have brought it down,” said Coun Richard Hurley, the cabinet member for public protection, housing and streetsmart. “We are not going to please everybody but we have to find the funding from somewhere.”

The leader of Swindon’s Labour group, Coun Jim Grant said: “Does the cabinet agree with me that the £40 charge is going to hit the people who can least afford it. Those are the he pensioners and the poor who can’t drive to drop off their waste?”

Coun Hurley said this was why the council had brought down the cost, to help those groups and it is why they have introduced the idea of a communal bin where residents can share each other’s green wheelie bins The council leader, David Renard, said that in 2006 the authority used to charge £1 a bag for green waste collections, which resulted in people paying a similar amount now as they were seven years ago.

Comments (9)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:18am Fri 13 Dec 13

Old Town Comment says...

Do the numbers for this consultation justify the positive headlines? The key change here is the green waste proposals. These were also agreed, but the numbers above show no public support. The article quotes 25% in favour of green wheelie bins and 41% against the idea.
Is the article wrong or this an exercise in ignoring consultation?
I note neither of these codifications state 'yes it is a good idea, but make it £40 rather than £70.
Do the numbers for this consultation justify the positive headlines? The key change here is the green waste proposals. These were also agreed, but the numbers above show no public support. The article quotes 25% in favour of green wheelie bins and 41% against the idea. Is the article wrong or this an exercise in ignoring consultation? I note neither of these codifications state 'yes it is a good idea, but make it £40 rather than £70. Old Town Comment

8:31am Fri 13 Dec 13

Klinkerhoffen says...

Another stress on the word 'con' in consultation.

So, the inevitable result? More people putting recyclables in their ordinary waste, meaning the council will fail to meet its targets, meaning landfill fines. As for the green waste, more will end up being burnt in the garden (very green, eh?) - or flytipped down the alleyways and cut-throughs. No dobt the council will claim not to have the budget to help the more responsible members of society clear that rubbish away...

So what money will have been saved, exactly?
Another stress on the word 'con' in consultation. So, the inevitable result? More people putting recyclables in their ordinary waste, meaning the council will fail to meet its targets, meaning landfill fines. As for the green waste, more will end up being burnt in the garden (very green, eh?) - or flytipped down the alleyways and cut-throughs. No dobt the council will claim not to have the budget to help the more responsible members of society clear that rubbish away... So what money will have been saved, exactly? Klinkerhoffen

9:28am Fri 13 Dec 13

silvergran says...

Where I live we have a long hedgerow alongside a public pathway and that is where all the green waste is going to end up. Before the green bag collections started, there was all sorts dumped in the hedge and my neighbour even saw someone with a wheelbarrow full at 3 am taking it to the hedge to dump. I had no objection to buying the green bags for collection and it was easier than having another wheelie bin to house!
Where I live we have a long hedgerow alongside a public pathway and that is where all the green waste is going to end up. Before the green bag collections started, there was all sorts dumped in the hedge and my neighbour even saw someone with a wheelbarrow full at 3 am taking it to the hedge to dump. I had no objection to buying the green bags for collection and it was easier than having another wheelie bin to house! silvergran

9:52am Fri 13 Dec 13

Trend says...

Hmm whilst it is good that they have dropped the charge from £70 to £40, that £70 would only have been for the first year (or the first time you got a green bin). Then it would have been £35 a year after that. So they whilst looking like a saving, they are actually charging £5 more a month.

I just don't use the green collection enough to warrant the extra £40. I suppose at least now I have the choice not to pay for it.
Hmm whilst it is good that they have dropped the charge from £70 to £40, that £70 would only have been for the first year (or the first time you got a green bin). Then it would have been £35 a year after that. So they whilst looking like a saving, they are actually charging £5 more a month. I just don't use the green collection enough to warrant the extra £40. I suppose at least now I have the choice not to pay for it. Trend

10:07am Fri 13 Dec 13

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

Well what it does mean is that I'll no longer be doing the councils job for them by keeping the hedgerows and grass tidy around by me because they never bother to do it. Instead I'll be putting in a complaint to street smart every time it needs a tidy and they haven't done it.
Well what it does mean is that I'll no longer be doing the councils job for them by keeping the hedgerows and grass tidy around by me because they never bother to do it. Instead I'll be putting in a complaint to street smart every time it needs a tidy and they haven't done it. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man

11:36am Fri 13 Dec 13

AndySN3 says...

Trend wrote:
Hmm whilst it is good that they have dropped the charge from £70 to £40, that £70 would only have been for the first year (or the first time you got a green bin). Then it would have been £35 a year after that. So they whilst looking like a saving, they are actually charging £5 more a month.

I just don't use the green collection enough to warrant the extra £40. I suppose at least now I have the choice not to pay for it.
Are the Council expecting a pat on the back for this story?? Increasing the cost by £5 a year from the original headline figure of £35.
It is true that we living in difficult times, but it does seem that at every turn now, somebody is out to shaft you, and people who live within their means, and by the law of the land are hounded so the authorities can get their greedy hands on more money to pass to people who don't give a to55, and are happy to sponge off society.
This will cost more money in the long run, and people will either have wheelie bins stolen, or used by people who didn't want to buy one!
[quote][p][bold]Trend[/bold] wrote: Hmm whilst it is good that they have dropped the charge from £70 to £40, that £70 would only have been for the first year (or the first time you got a green bin). Then it would have been £35 a year after that. So they whilst looking like a saving, they are actually charging £5 more a month. I just don't use the green collection enough to warrant the extra £40. I suppose at least now I have the choice not to pay for it.[/p][/quote]Are the Council expecting a pat on the back for this story?? Increasing the cost by £5 a year from the original headline figure of £35. It is true that we living in difficult times, but it does seem that at every turn now, somebody is out to shaft you, and people who live within their means, and by the law of the land are hounded so the authorities can get their greedy hands on more money to pass to people who don't give a to55, and are happy to sponge off society. This will cost more money in the long run, and people will either have wheelie bins stolen, or used by people who didn't want to buy one! AndySN3

12:14pm Fri 13 Dec 13

Old Town Comment says...

I agree that the Green Proposal is preposterous and will probably cost more in the long run when fly-tipping etc are counted in.
I am also very worried about the removal of a universal support to be replaced by one where those who can afford it are serviced.
But we also should not ignore the ridiculous way a consultation has been ignored by those who requested the opinions. Without apology.
This document has been posted elsewhere - it is the document Cabinet read before the decision.
There seems a clear story that the outcome IS NOT what the people of Swindon asked for - what do you think?
http://ww5.swindon.g
ov.uk/moderngov/docu
ments/b12111/Agenda%
20Item%206%20-%20Was
te%20Collection%20Se
rvice%20-%20Suppleme
ntary%20-%20Revised%
20Appendix%203%2011t
h-Dec-2013%2018.00%2
0.pdf?T=9
I agree that the Green Proposal is preposterous and will probably cost more in the long run when fly-tipping etc are counted in. I am also very worried about the removal of a universal support to be replaced by one where those who can afford it are serviced. But we also should not ignore the ridiculous way a consultation has been ignored by those who requested the opinions. Without apology. This document has been posted elsewhere - it is the document Cabinet read before the decision. There seems a clear story that the outcome IS NOT what the people of Swindon asked for - what do you think? http://ww5.swindon.g ov.uk/moderngov/docu ments/b12111/Agenda% 20Item%206%20-%20Was te%20Collection%20Se rvice%20-%20Suppleme ntary%20-%20Revised% 20Appendix%203%2011t h-Dec-2013%2018.00%2 0.pdf?T=9 Old Town Comment

1:57pm Fri 13 Dec 13

LordAshOfTheBrake says...

So 6000 people responded to the consultation, out of how many in Swindon?

The other thing about the consultation was there was no check on the validity of someone who was responding. So one person who feels very strongly about could have put in many responses.

I have yet to meet anyone who things the changes/charges are acceptable.
So 6000 people responded to the consultation, out of how many in Swindon? The other thing about the consultation was there was no check on the validity of someone who was responding. So one person who feels very strongly about could have put in many responses. I have yet to meet anyone who things the changes/charges are acceptable. LordAshOfTheBrake

3:38pm Sat 4 Jan 14

chalklands says...

How can this be a victory for 'people power' when the cost is going to be higher. Agreed, the cost will be lower in the first year...£40 instead of £70 (£35 of the £70 was to buy a green wheelie bin), but in subsequent years the cost is going to be £40 instead of £35......
If you can find the report that summarises the consultation questionnaire, 19% of respondents were in agreement with the proposed charge whilst 33% found it unacceptable. Another 19% thought that the cost should be covered by council tax.

These results are on page 38 of the 54 page report. http://ww5.swindon.g
ov.uk/moderngov/docu
ments/b12133/Backgro
und%20Paper%20-%20Ch
anges%20to%20Waste%2
0Collection%20Servic
es%20-%20Original%20
Cabinet%20Report%201
1%20December%202013%
20.pdf?T=9

So much for democracy!!
How can this be a victory for 'people power' when the cost is going to be higher. Agreed, the cost will be lower in the first year...£40 instead of £70 (£35 of the £70 was to buy a green wheelie bin), but in subsequent years the cost is going to be £40 instead of £35...... If you can find the report that summarises the consultation questionnaire, 19% of respondents were in agreement with the proposed charge whilst 33% found it unacceptable. Another 19% thought that the cost should be covered by council tax. These results are on page 38 of the 54 page report. http://ww5.swindon.g ov.uk/moderngov/docu ments/b12133/Backgro und%20Paper%20-%20Ch anges%20to%20Waste%2 0Collection%20Servic es%20-%20Original%20 Cabinet%20Report%201 1%20December%202013% 20.pdf?T=9 So much for democracy!! chalklands

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree