Conservatives call for five-year protection of weekly bin collections

Conservative councillors have called upon Bath and North East Somerset Council to take up a Government offer to protect weekly waste collections for the next five years.

The Government announced in September that it was earmarking £250 million for a new fund to support local councils to either reintroduce or protect the weekly collection of household waste. Any council which signs-up to the scheme has to commit to maintaining the weekly service for at least five years.

At the time of the Government announcement the Liberal Democrat-run authority said it was considering the Government’s offer. However, Conservative councillors have now said it is time for the council to commit to the scheme and have tabled a question to the Lib Dem Cabinet asking whether the council will take up the Government offer.

Councillor Martin Veal, the Conservative Shadow Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said:

“This is a generous offer from Government, funded from savings in the Local Government department, which B&NES should not miss out on. Bath and North East Somerset has always maintained the weekly waste collection and Conservatives have consistently resisted any attempts to move to fortnightly. The Liberal Democrat Cabinet has previously said this is ‘wasting tax-payers money’, but we firmly believe this is not the case. It is a basic right for residents to have waste collected on a regular weekly basis.

“The Government is offering to support councils who put forward a plan which encourages increased recycling whilst maintaining the weekly service for at least the next five years. However, B&NES will have to bid alongside other councils for its share of the funding so the Lib Dem Cabinet should move quickly to secure this.”