Residents ‘paying for private bin collections’ as councils cut back on collections
Budget cuts and new charges mean fly-tipping set to rocket across Britain
Householders and communities are exploring ways of paying waste management companies to remove their domestic waste as council cutbacks mean that municipal collections can be as infrequent as once every three weeks.
A British waste company has found that exasperated council taxpayers are turning to the private sector as their bin collections become less reliable. Some reports show people waiting weeks on end for stinking rubbish to be removed, while councils approve longer waiting times between rounds.
And according to BusinessWaste.co.uk, council budgets cut to the bone mean that the risk of fly-tipping becomes even greater as people take the law into their own hands.
“It’s becoming a vicious circle,” says BusinessWaste.co.uk spokesperson Mark Hall, “In an attempt to save money on waste collections, local authorities are spending just as much – if not more – clearing up the aftermath of fly-tipping.
“The vast majority of people are law-abiding and put up with any sort of inconvenience, but for some, two to three weeks is a long time to wait with full bins, so our operators are seeing more and more domestic waste being dumped in the streets or on private property.”
Government figures have shown that two-weekly collections have been largely accepted by the British public. This is especially the case where there is an alternate week recycling waste collection, which has seen recycling rates soar in areas where tactics are used. However, missed rounds – especially around public holidays – sometimes mean people have to wait longer, with local news reports speaking of up to one month between collections in some areas.
BusinessWaste.co.uk says plans for three weekly collections are proving unpopular among householders and has spoken to residents in and around Bury – the first English council to approve three-weekly plans – who say that they’ll resort to private collections to protect their streets from the expected smell and vermin associated with decaying rubbish.
“Council taxpayers aren’t pleased,” says Hall, “And they say they’ve been betrayed by their local authority. They’re looking for ways of opting out, getting a refund, and going their own way.”
BusinessWaste.co.uk is certain that other residents won’t be so bold: “They’ll wait until their rubbish starts to stink a bit, take it down the road and throw it in the local canal. It’s going to happen.”
Further plans by local councils to save money on their waste budgets are also proving unpopular. Some councils are already charging domestic users per-visit fees for taking non-household items such as building rubble and DIY waste to local recycling facilities.
“Once again, this is certain to backfire on those authorities who are planning to save a few thousand pounds on waste budgets – we predict the areas around municipal tips will be littered with the contents of car boots and trailers from people who refuse to pay.”
BusinessWaste.co.uk says that the people who bear the brunt of the public’s anger over waste collections and tip fees are the blameless operators of bin lorries and recycling centres.
“Give these hard-working people a break,” says Mark Hall, “They’re doing their best amid cut after cut after cut. But it’s clear that councils have got to listen to the people on this. Making council taxpayers wait weeks on end to remove their rubbish is a road they really don’t want to go down.”
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