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Plan to cut Torfaen bin collections to once a month slammed online

Free Press Series: Refuse plan slammed online Refuse plan slammed online

COMMUNITY members have gone online to vent their frustration at plans to cut rubbish collections to just once a month.

The comments came after Torfaen council unveiled the drastic proposals in a bid to boost recycling and avoid non compliance government fines of up to £600,000 in 2015/16.

The Labour council has been consulting on the plans through a roadshow, and public engagement events on their website and Facebook.

Under the proposals, current fortnightly collections could either be maintained, restricted to just two refuse bags per household or cut to once a month.

Carol Knight said on Facebook: “Sorry this isn't a consultation. Dress it up as much as you like."

Liza Beth said: It is a rushed process that will cause a lot of problems. Maybe the council should have lobbied the Welsh Assembly and asked for more time to implement the changes before the fines started.”

Anita Barnard also said: “So many consultations have been held to placate the residents of Torfaen and the outcome has always been what Torfaen County Borough Council want.”

Labour Cllr David Daniels for Llantarnam ward acknowledged people’s reactions had not been entirely positive.

“It’s mostly frustration with the proposals," he said.

“There’s acceptance you need to change. It’s not an easy message we need to get across but one we have to.”

The criticisms came to light after Pontypool Community Council chairwoman Gaynor James warned in May plans to cut the collections to once a month could increase fly-tipping.

Her colleagues echoed her views during a community council meeting in Pontypool on Wednesday [June 25].

The community council warned households may “rebel” if the drastic cuts are implemented, which could in turn lead to rubbish being discarded in the streets.

The members added that details of the consultation included in an issue of the council publication called Torfaen Talks could have been featured more prominently than they did.

They also expressed concerns about plans to cut collections for large households comprising five members or more.

Torfaen currently recycles 52 per cent of its waste and all Welsh councils must reach recycling rates of 70 per cent by 2025.

Torfaen council said that comments would be taken into consideration as part of the consultation process, which closes at the end of the month.

This will then be presented to scrutiny at the end of July and taken to full council later in the year, and it will be councillors who decide which option to take forward.

To take part in the online consultation log on to torfaen.gov.uk

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