After (or possibly during) Friday’s Northfield District Committee, at least one Longbridge Councillor took to Twitter to state they had been advised there would be NO cap on recycling – and that Cllr Robert Alden was therefore wrong when he said side recycling waste (i.e. extra items which won’t fit in a wheelie bin) wouldn’t be taken.
But those two things are not the same! I’ve just watched the relevant parts of both the Northfield and today’s Sutton District meetings and it looks as if in fact Cllr Robert Alden was absolutely right!
Yes, there’s no official cap on recycling. But the officer stated that if you have lots of extra recycling, the way to deal with it would be to apply for a second recycling bin. (This included green waste bins as well – presumably at double the cost since these will cost householders £35 per annum). He said that the Council might consider doing weekly recycling collections (but presumably not for everyone, only for areas where recycling amounts are high) but at NO point did he say that side waste for paper and cans recycling would be allowed – even when specifically asked that question by Cllr Philip Parkin.
So if you don’t want a second recycling bin, or your road isn’t chosen for a weekly recycling service, though there may not be an official cap, there WILL be a limit to how much paper you can put out – simply because there will be a limit to how much you can physically fit in your bin, unless you want a total of four wheelie bins sitting outside your property.
The questionnaire states that cardboard neatly bundled will be allowed as side waste. It does NOT say paper, tins or bottles will be allowed. The only reference the officer today made to side waste being allowed, was that it might be allowed at Christmas.
Meanwhile, I have been forecasting that once you start charging people to recycle, and effectively limit what they can put out (by refusing side waste), recycling rates in the city will fall. And surprise, surprise, today at Cabinet I understand the ruling Labour group voted to reduce their recycling target because of the impending changes. One of the main points of introducing wheelie bins we were told was to increase recycling – so today’s move looks like an admission of failure already on the part of the Labour Group – and the bins haven’t even come in yet!