Plans to charge Wealden residents for garden waste collections
Roy Galley, Cabinet member for waste management at Wealden District Council has recently said that the council intends to start charging local residents to dispose of their garden waste. He said it was a regrettable decision but the tough choice needed to be made due to a sharp dip in the price of organic waste on international markets in recent years. He said that he was proud of Wealden's recycling rate of over 50% and it was a decision that the council didn't take lightly.
The proposed charges are likely to come into effect around the summer of 2019 and it's hoped that recycling rates will at the very least remain the same, and will hopefully even increase as a result of the new charging scheme.
How much will recycling garden waste cost for Wealden residents?
The price that's being banded around at the moment is a fee of £1 per week. Mr Galley has said that the exact figure hasn't yet been decided and won't be set until a new collections contract is agreed later in 2018. He said that Wealden is a largely rural district and as such, many residents were already composting their garden waste and would probably continue to do so. It's thought that the council will also be advertising and promoting incentives for locals to compost their own garden waste in the future by offering garden composting equipment for sale ( hopefully at decent prices).
Whilst a garden waste collection service is not a legal requirement for councils to provide, Wealden's recycling service began around 15 years ago. Mr Galley added:
Recycling collections have come a long way since those early days and we need to review the services we provide and how we deliver and pay for them. Rather than look to the council tax to fund garden waste collections, we think it is not unreasonable to ask the residents who value the service to make a contribution to the cost, as residents in the other joint waste partnership authorities of Rother and Hastings do.