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Bonkers Blog November 2018

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27 November - Do what we say, not what we do

Bexley has had a reasonably good refuse collection service for the past ten years. I don’t think they have fined any residents for minor transgressions of petty rules but they do seem to encourage fly tipping. Not emptying a bin because the lid isn’t totally down is just stupid. By the time of the next collection there will be an even greater accumulation so the rubbish can either go into a neighbour’s bin or into the woods. What else is a resident supposed to do?

I personally find the variable bin capacities to be unfair. At my address 240 litres of capacity per person is provided. Next door they have only 48 and beyond that there is 480 litres. I allow my neighbour to use my spare capacity and sometimes find it filled with stuff that should have been recycled - not to mention the maggots in summer.

Maybe the 480 litre man has the right idea, he won’t share his bins.

Refuse collection is probably the most important service offered by any council, it affects everyone, so I expected to go to this evening’s public meeting on the subject.

Having looked at the Agenda I think I have better things to do. Discussion of all the interesting stuff will be held in secret, the public excluded.

All we know about what Bexley Council is preparing to inflict on us is that the three plastic boxes are likely to be replaced by two more wheelie bins, there will be some mixing of materials that used to be separated and the real rubbish will be collected at three weekly intervals. The details were provided in a blog and its appendix last month.

There is an updated version which reveals that the aim is to save almost one and a half million pounds a year.

TweetTwo years ago Bexley introduced a charge for collection of garden waste, a bin tax. By taking advantage of discount schemes in three successive years I have paid £27, £30 and a couple of months ago £33. The plan is to increase the charge to £38. An increase of 41%. So Bexley Council’s bin tax has inevitably become a stealth tax.

Bexley Council’s justification is not that the service is operating at a loss but that their charge is lower than some other Councils. Bexley Council is hoping that you will have forgotten that separating garden waste from food waste saved them £440,000 a year and on top of that they collected tens of thousands of £33s.

I think that if the charge goes up to £38 I will not renew next September because there is little garden waste during the winter. Then if I rejoin in April I will have effectively saved around £20, enough to pay the increased charge for another four years. Either that or buy an incinerator.

BottlesOn a related subject, Bexley Council is aiming to get us to reduce plastic waste. Yesterday Councillor Craske issued another of his Press Releases. He was trumpeting the provision of a water fountain in Broadway. Ironically it was Councillor Craske who authorised the destruction of the water fountain that used to be at the same site.

Maybe he should address the waste of plastic at Council meetings.

On 17th October ten people at a Council meeting somehow managed to share 14 plastic bottles and a similar number of single use plastic cups.

The scene was shown here on 18th October and the picture nicked for use on Twitter, I personally do not mind but that particular photo is copyright Hugh Neal of Maggot Sandwich fame and it was used here with his permission.


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