Rubbish pick up could be last

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The annual, roadside, inorganic rubbish collection is on this month … and could be the last.

The yearly collection of items from unwanted pipes to furniture, lawnmowers to washing machines is scheduled for May 24 to 28 in Tamahere, Matangi and Tauwhare but the Waikato District Council is proposing that it be the last of its kind.

The full list of what can or cannot be put out on the kerb for collection click is here.

The pile can be no more than 2m long, 1m high and 1m wide. Rubbish should be put out on the kerb on the day before the week of collection, i.e. Sunday May 23.

Anything kerbside over a pile 2m x 1m x 1m will not be collected

End of an era?

The council is proposing to stop the kerbside collection because it encourages waste to landfill, is expensive, and is both difficult and potentially dangerous. It is the only council in NZ still offering the collection.

The proposal comes in the council’s 2021-31 Long Term Plan Consultation Document.

Waikato district Mayor Allan Sanson acknowledged that the service was popular with many in the community but said that there were also many challenging issues with delivery of the annual service.

“These issues include the health and safety of both our contractors and the general public, illegal dumping, compliance with rules, the fact that the cost of delivering the service is increasing every year and that the service contradicts waste minimisation legislation and our own waste management minimisation plans,” he said.

Due to increased landfill costs associated with the waste minimisation levy and traffic management needs, the cost to deliver the kerbside inorganic rubbish collection service is likely to continue to increase substantially over time, he said. 

“For 2019/20 the council had a budget of $330,000 but the actual cost to deliver the service was $395,000. Increasing costs of delivering the kerbside inorganic service are likely to reach $490,000 per year by 2024,” Sanson said.

The council is planning to introduce Resource Recovery Centres in Huntly and Tuakau and believes that they will provide the community with an opportunity to dispose of inorganic waste more sustainably. 

Items disposed of at Resource Recovery Centres are reused or recovered wherever possible. Currently under the kerbside inorganic rubbish collection system, everything is sent straight to landfill. 

There are two options in the consultation document for Waikato district residents to choose from: 

  • The council can continue to deliver the service with an increase to the solid waste targeted rate (for everyone who currently receives a refuse collection) to cover the true cost of the service.
  • Or the council can stop the service from year 1 of the 2021-31 Long Term Plan. This is its preferred option.

The consultation document is available from all council offices and libraries and by phoning on 0800 492 452, or check out www.waikatodistrict.govt.nz/ltp for more information and to have your say. 

Feedback is open until 5pm on Friday, May 27. 

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