Row over Flintshire bin bag service

Reporter:

Hayley Collins

A ROW has erupted after the decision to scrap the weekly black sack bin collection in Flintshire was upheld at a meeting.

Following a heated debate at County Hall yesterday members voted to uphold the decision already taken by the council’s executive earlier this month to stop the weekly collection of residual waste and replace it with a managed weekly service.

Labour opposition leader Aaron Shotton accused the council’s executive committee of abusing its power.

He said: “There are 61 councillors in Flintshire that are not part of the executive and when a decision of such significance like this is made, that affects every member of the council, then it should go to full council for consultation.

“There has been a serious democratic deficit here and in my view it’s an abuse of the executive system. It needs to be reported to the Welsh Assembly.”

The original decision made by the executive on July 13 was taken by just five members as two were on holiday and two declared an interest so were unable to vote.

Cllr Bernie Attridge added: “Only five members took that decision. What we are seeking is consultation with staff, trade unions and most importantly the people it’s going to affect – the residents.”

But deputy council leader Tony Sharps contested the accusations.

He said: “Cllr Shotton mentioned abuse of power and that is quite out of order. It was never an abuse of power.”

Cllr Nancy Matthews, executive member for waste, said consultation had taken place.

She added: “We have had meetings and members’ workshops that covered everything that we were doing in this area.”

An online public consultation was also available on the council’s website.

Councillors Shotton and Attridge had hoped to refer the matter to full council for further consideration but this did not generate enough support.

Officers are now hoping the new scheme will be up and running by October.

Under the new service food waste will be collected every week and recyclables and residual waste will be collected on a fortnightly basis. The black sacks will also be replaced with wheelie bins.

Specific arrangements relating to collections from flats and terrace houses, as well as the transfer of refuse collectors from residual to recyclable rounds, will be ironed out in the coming months.

See full story in the Leader

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