A SENIOR member of Torfaen council has pledged to scrutinise fully the “huge” number of consultation responses to its proposals for the future of black bin collections in the borough, before making a decision on how to proceed.

The executive member for neighbourhoods, Councillor John Cunningham, hailed a massive return of views from residents over the controversial plans for the future of the rubbish service.

A total of 1,482 responses were made online, over the phone, or at roadshows held across the borough.

Last week we reported that more than 1,000 people had responded to the controversial scheme online alone.

Residents have been asked to consider whether they would choose to maintain a fortnightly collection but with a smaller 140-litre wheelie bin; try a fortnightly collection of two refuse bags per household; or see monthly collections introduced, using the existing 240-litre black wheelie bin.

The local authority believes there are the best options to meet future Welsh Government recycling targets and avoid significant fines.

An overwhelming majority voted for the first option, with just 186 people voting for the monthly rotation.

Cllr Cunningham said: “We had a huge response to this consultation and the overwhelming preference from the public was to maintain a fortnightly collection with a smaller bin.

“The consultation process will now be fully scrutinised, and the results will be presented to full council later in the year."

“Councillors will also be presented with the comments received during live Q&A sessions on social media to inform their decision.”

If councillors progress the scheme as voted for by residents there will be a cost to the council of £754,000 in the first year.

The consultation results will now be presented to the council’s Cleaner Communities Scrutiny Committee on July 23 for review.

The meeting will be open for the public to observe, and will be webcast.

It will be followed by a member’s seminar after the summer recess, which is also open for the public to view. The consultation results will then be presented to full council for a final decision.