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Bonkers Blog June 2015

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24 June (Part 2) - Bexley. A council built on lies, big and small

TweetI have no idea why they do it, constantly lie that is,  but I suppose I should be grateful that they are so keen to keep me in a job. Err. No, I think I had better think that out again.

This morning Bexley’s Lord Haw Haw came out with this little beauty of a Tweet. Their highly paid PR machine was making the outrageous claim that two new bins, one for garden waste and one for kitchen scraps, will cost the same as the scrap value of one nine year old bin which not long ago Bexley council was saying were nearing the end of their useful life. That too was a lie, those along my street may have a few scuffs and scrapes but all are still perfectly serviceable. Most of you will no doubt make similar observations.

That of course is the simple common sense view although the actual arithmetic will be a little more complicated. The old 140 litre brown bins are to be replaced on a basically one for one basis by 23 litre kitchen waste bins. The target is for 40% of residents to sign up for a 240 litre brown bin. In round figures we are talking about recycling 75,000 140 litre bins and replacing them with 30,000 new 240 litre bins and more than 75,000 23 litre bins.

MasseyI am insulting your intelligence here aren’t I? Sorry about that but Bexley council wants you to believe that 30,000 bins almost twice the size of the 75,000 old ones will be paid for by the latter’s scrap value with enough left over to buy the new kitchen caddies.

New 240 litre bins cost around £40 retail, even in bulk they are unlikely to cost less than, say, £12 and the caddy another four or five pounds. Cabinet member Don Massey was probably being more honest when he said that the scrap value of the old brown bins should be enough to pay for the collection costs.

Whilst Bexley council’s Tweet is an obvious lie it may be true that the whole scheme is close to self financing. What Bexley council is very keen to hide is that separating food and garden waste will improve revenues by £440,000 a year. Probably the whole charging idea is a scam to raise additional revenue, but I expect you had guessed that anyway. Certainly 2,566 residents who have signed the petition recognise a lie when they see one.

The petition is in the most important respect a waste of time, the bin tax is a done deal. Bexley council did go through the pretence of holding a consultation and 77% of people were against the idea. You know what the Listening Council did.


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