Rugby Borough Council explores charge for garden waste collection

RUGBY Borough Council is considering introducing a charge for households wanting a garden waste collection service.

The decision to explore the charge was made at a meeting of the cross-party Waste Management Services working party held on 2 November, after hearing that neighbouring Hinckley and Bosworth Borough and Harborough District Councils had already introduced a similar scheme, and Daventry District Council is also starting a chargeable garden waste collection service.

The council announced last month (October) that the current green bin waste collection service, for organic waste, would be suspended this Christmas to allow the council to reorganise waste collection rounds and make sure that every home had a black bin collection over the Christmas period.

The last green bin collection will take place in the week beginning 5 December 2016, with households due to receive a leaflet about the changes over the next few weeks.

The working party decided to include a consultation form in the information leaflet, aimed at finding out how often residents would use a chargeable garden waste collection service and how much they would be prepared to pay.

The borough council is required to provide a free rubbish and recycling service, but does not have to collect garden waste.

The working party will make its recommendations in time to support the budget setting process for the next financial year, meaning that a charge could be introduced when the service is reintroduced next spring.

Cllr Lisa Parker, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for environment and public realm, and chair of the waste management services working party, said:

With the government grant that makes up a large part of the council's income being phased out over the next few years, we must either reduce our services to match the reduced funding available or fund our existing services from other income.

Many residents find the garden waste collection service very convenient, so by introducing a charge of perhaps around £1 per week we will be able to provide a cost effective, efficient service for households that want it while minimising the overall net cost of the service.

Residents can take part in the consultation by completing and returning the form that they receive in the next few weeks.

Respondents who complete all parts of the survey will be entered into a draw for £50 in town centre vouchers.

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