Council debates green waste collection costs

Green waste.
Green waste.

Louth Town Council has warned ELDC that attempts to raise the charges for green waste collection could lead to an increase in fly-tipping.

At the Town Council’s meeting last Tuesday (August 23), Councillor George Horton suggested that if East Lindsey District Council increases the price of green waste collections then they could ‘price themselves 
out of the market’.

Coun Horton added: “What will happen is, you will encourage fly-tipping. It’s 
as simple and plain as that.”

He slammed the service as unsustainable and overpriced, and said that ELDC needed to ‘get the service right’ before residents would tolerate a price increase - adding that his own green waste had 
been missed on seven occasions so far this year.

The annual charge for an East Lindsey household’s green waste collection currently stand at £25, with 25 fortnightly collections taking place throughout 
the year.

However, the service is currently under review, and a public consultation on the matter closed on August 29.

East Lindsey residents were invited to select one of four preferred options - some of which included price increases of up to £60, or a reduction in the number of collections. There was also an option for residents to select ‘none of the above’ and submit their own suggestions.

At the Town Council meeting, Coun Jill Makinson-Sanders said: “This is a statutory service, it has to be provided, but presently it’s losing something like £460,000 per year.

“If they put the charge up to £35, I don’t think that most people would miss £35, quite frankly, because it’s cheaper than driving your stuff up to the tip.

“If people don’t want to pay, they don’t have to pay. I recycle 
my stuff.

“They [ELDC] have to do this service and then need to get the money back in. If they don’t get the money back there, you’ll find something else is cut.”

Coun Makinson-Sanders reiterated that the Government has decreed that ELDC needs to save £6 million in the next four years.

Coun Laura Stephenson objected, and said: “This is another tax on something that should already be paid for in our council tax.

“This is penalising people who perhaps live in a council house, have a large garden, and are on benefits. How are they supposed to pay for 
that? £35 is a week’s food.

“This is absurd, we can’t be doing this. It should be free.”

Coun Pauline Watson responded that if the service was free, then council tax would go up and people would be ‘worse off that way’.

The Council voted to give a corporate response to ELDC, backing Coun Horton’s alternative suggestion that the annual fee remains at £25, but with a reduced number of collections over the winter months (November-March).

• What are your views on the issue? Email louth