DEVELOPERS of new homes in Thurrock will have to pay for new wheelie bins as Thurrock Council seeks to save up to £35,000 a year.
And careless residents who break their bins, and who lose them and are found to be at fault, will also be charged for replacements reports the Thurrock Enquirer.
However, Cllr Val Morris- Cook, the portfolio holder for the environment, assured Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting that disadvantaged residents and those who had behaved responsibily would be treated fairly.
“We are not out to penalise people or use this as a way to raise money, but on the other hand we are not Mr and Mrs Santa Claus any longer and we must act accordingly,” she said.
“I don’t think it’s unreasonable that developers who build new homes shouldn’t be providers of the bins for their residents and that won’t penalise the residents who move into the Borough.
“And equally it isn’t right that the Council just covers the cost of people who don’t look after their bins.
We’ve had cases of people breaking them by filling them up with hardcore – and of people selling their bins on E-Bay then coming back to us for a new one.
“It’s right that they should pay for new bins but people whose bins are broken in normal usage, or whose bins are stolen, for example, won’t be charged automatically. Every case will be judged on its merits, the ability of the residents to pay, and the evidence.
“And we can make sure that the process is fair because we now have CCTV on all our collection vehicles so if they are damaged in collection, or not put back where they should be, we will know.”
The proposal to endorse a new policy for recovering costs from developers for new bins and residents for replacement bins was approved at the meeting, when Council Leader Cllr John Kent repeated that responsible residents would not be penalised, saying: “I hope that we are not going to be too draconian. The saving here is largely meant to be on the provision of new bins for new homes.”
With most homes in the borough now operating a three bin waste disposal system, replacement of lost or damaged bins currently costs the authority £130,000 annually but it is predicted the new policy will get that figure below £100,000.