Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Changes to the waste collection are coming

What do you recycle?
At a meeting on Thursday 29th November the ruling Conservatives at Wokingham Borough Council are reviewing the waste collection service that was introduced last April.

Liberal Democrat councillors have been heavily involved in trying to get changes to the new system.   Based on what people like you told us in response to our survey on Waste & Recycling, and on other contacts with resident over the past 6 months, the Liberal Democrats have prioritised the following issues

-           short-term: improvements to the size and strength of the blue bags
-           short-term: better customer service, especially from Veolia
-           medium-term: a better scheme for garden waste
-           long-term: widening the range of what can be recycled, including food waste

We are pleased that our efforts to get changes are beginning to pay off.  Changes are being proposed.  You can read what they are here:

We do not know how the Conservatives will vote on Thursday.  However, the wording of the report suggests that the following changes will be made:

-           bigger and stronger blue bags
-           customer contact via Wokingham Direct instead of Veolia
-           more ways to obtain extra paid-for bags
-           the introduction of a £10 subsidy on purchases of composters

It appears there will be NO CHANGE to

-           the cost of the garden wasteservice
-           the cost of additional blue bags
-           recycling

Getting change is not an easy matter.  The Conservatives signed a Waste Collection contract that lasts 7 years, and opportunities for changing it are limited.  Many of the changes the Lib Dems would like around recycling are especially difficult to make because they require also altering the Waste Disposal contract.  The Waste Disposal contract is a PFI contract that runs until 2031, and involves Bracknell and Reading councils as well as Wokingham.

Getting change may be difficult - but the Lib Dems are determined to keep pushing. 

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