STSB standing its ground on plan to increase waste charges

THE States’ Trading & Supervisory Board is standing by its plan to increase waste charges from January.

(Picture by Peter Frankland, 28948161)
(Picture by Peter Frankland, 28948161)

Deputies Gavin St Pier and Lyndon Trott have submitted an annulment motion to the States to stop the rise coming in.

They are concerned that the entire system of pay-as-you-throw funding is broken due to islanders recycling so much and cutting down their black bag waste. They have called for a full review of the system.

There is currently a £3m. annual shortfall in funding.

STSB member John Hollis, who is chairman of the Guernsey Waste board, said the rise would help offset the shortfall in income since the new collection and charging arrangements were introduced.

‘Guernsey Waste continues to work within the charging mechanisms approved by the States in 2018,’ he said.

‘That is to recover the cost of household waste and recycling services through a combination of an annual fixed charge and a pay-as-you-throw charge for general refuse.

‘This includes recycling, which incurs significant cost, but for which no separate charge is applied. That is specifically to encourage waste prevention, reuse and recycling, and it has been shown to work very well. The island is seeing record low volumes of household waste and record high levels of recycling.’

It is proposed by the STSB that the fixed rate charge should go up £5 to £90, while 90-litre black bag stickers would rise from £2.50 to £2.70 and 50-litre bag stickers go up from £1.40 to £1.50 each.

‘Under this system, those households who produce the most general waste will pay the most, which is in keeping with the polluter pays principle,’ Mr Hollis said.

‘That will continue to be the case even after the proposed increase. Rather than punishing recyclers, the system will continue to reward those who make the most effort to recycle as they will pay the lowest charges.

‘Having frozen charges for the whole of this year, the STSB has agreed a relatively modest increase for next year – equivalent to around 20p per week. This is while we continue to explore opportunities to reduce costs within the financial model for waste and recycling services, and look for innovation and efficiency, which will benefit islanders.’

Waste charge regulations are on the agenda for the December States meeting.

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