Monday, 21 November 2011

Bulky waste

Bulky Waste Collection Discounts Reinstated

Last year the Tory lead administration did nothing to encourage people to use the councils bulky waste collection service, all they did was put up the price which put people off using the service and as a result fly-tipping has got out of hand. 

For years they told us the environment was at the heart of their political agenda. After only one year in office we now know the truth. It was a political stunt cynically designed to get votes.

Labour is the only Reading party that has a long and established record on positively tackling environmental issues. Paul Gittings the lead member for environment and climate change said: “We are taking this action to encourage a better take-up of the service and make it more affordable for those on lower or fixed incomes.' Reading residents will again be able to take advantage of significant discounts for the Council's bulky waste collection service if proposals are approved next week.”


Reading Borough Council Press Release

The Council's bulky waste collection service is a door-to-door service for residents or businesses who need help in disposing of household items they no longer need and which may be too heavy or large for them to move. Examples include furniture, fridges or other large electrical items.

Residents who held a concessionary Your Reading Passport were previously entitled to two free bulky waste collections a year, however these two free collections were removed from April 1, meaning including elderly, disabled or residents on low incomes had to pay the full price for collection of bulky waste items. Prices for residents are £32.90 for the collection of up to 5 items or a fridge/freezer and £42.70 for the collection of 6 to 10 items.

The new administration is now proposing to introduce a 25% discount for concessionary 'Your Reading Passport' holders. It means that for elderly, disabled or residents on low incomes, the cost of the collection of up to 5 items or a fridge/freezer from a doorstep will be £24.68p, a fall of £8.22p. For the collection of 6 to 10 items the cost would be £32.03 - £10.67 cheaper.

Under the proposed new scheme, Your Reading concessionary Passport holders could also use their discount prices for as many collections as they want a year.

The new discounts would become effective from January 2012 and, in addition, bulky waste collection costs for all other Reading residents would be frozen for the coming year. Proposals will be going to a meeting of Reading Borough Council's Cabinet on November 28 as part of the Council's regular review of fees and charges. * (see Notes To Editors)

Paul Gittings, Reading's Lead Councillor for Environment and Climate Change, said: "This administration will do all it can to make sure that unsightly bulky waste is not left dumped in our communities. We have therefore taken this action to encourage a better take-up of the service and make it more affordable for those on lower or fixed incomes.'

The removal of concessions for bulky waste collection from April 1 have resulted in a significant drop in the total number of collections, from 91 collections per week to an average of 26 collections a week. Reading Borough Council's Streetcare Team estimate the reinstatement of discounts would mean an increase in collections to an average of 40 a week.

The Council's current bulky waste contract ends at the end of this year. Proposals would see the Streetcare Team bring the bulky waste collection service back in-house and refuse crews absorb the expected additional workload as part of their daily rounds. This would create a saving for the Reading council tax payer of £25,000 by the Council not having to pay costs to a contractor to carry out the bulky waste collection work.

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