It looks as though residents in Malvern Hills will be limited to just two sacks of non-recyclable rubbish a week as District Council chiefs feel the pressure from central government to hit landfill targets in the area.
The new rule looks set to be okayed this evening, and will mean that each household will be issued with two liveried bags – the only ones that will be collected each week. And if homeowners should occasionally produce overflow, say if they have a party or guests to stay or they look after children or pets, or whatever reason they might need extra bin bags? Well tough. Gone are the days of nipping out to the shop to buy additional ones – they won’t be removed by the binmen – and all exceptional circumstances like these will mean applying to the council for extra bin bags.
Yes, that’s right, applying. Locals will be expected to expend time and effort putting together a persuasive argument and essentially lobbying their council officials for extra plastic bin sacks, despite the fact that the average Band D household in the area pays around £1,400 per year, many of whom will only really rely on the council for basic services like street light and bin collection.
According to the Worcester News article, larger houses and those with specific needs (e.g. to dispose of nappies) will also be granted extra bin bags. But who decides what’s large enough to justify another of these precious bin sacks, and who comes to inspect when the child is older and potty-trained in order to annul the extra bag allowance? And how long until everyone is reduced to a limiting one bag-per-week?
Sounds like a great way of creating a black market for black bags…
And, more importantly, will the local people receive guarantees that the council be cutting the amount of non-recyclable rubbish they dispose of commensurate with these new restrictions on residents? It’s not unreasonable to expect them to lead by example.
There’s little doubt that Malvern Hills District Council are under pressure to cut down on the amount they send to landfill, but it seems as though they’d rather coerce ordinary families to recycle than encourage them. Surely they should be making a point of tracking down the worst culprits as far as waste and pollution are concerned and perhaps trusting those who don’t “qualify” for an extra bag to regulate themselves? We can only hope that families who don’t have mitigating factors like a large household or young children won’t get caught out and end up having to keep decomposing refuse on their property, inviting rats and germs into their homes.
At the absolute minimum, if local residents are to receive such a restricted and restrictive service they should benefit from the incentives the District Council have been given by central government to reduce this waste and see a fall in council tax that reflects the inconvenience this will cause.