(To receive a quarterly update on the dual stream recycling service)
The Chair welcomed the Portfolio Holder for Skills, Planning, Economy and Waste, Councillor Doyle and the Chief Executive, Mr Andrew Barratt, the General Manager of the Joint Waste Service, Mr Nigel Harris, and the Customer Relations and Performance Manager of the Joint Waste Service, Ms Victoria Woodhouse to this meeting.
The General Manager provided an overview of the Report and confirmed that the service reliability remained good. He reported that the plans set out in the Report for the Christmas and new year period needed to be amended as the tipping facilities would not be open long enough on Saturday 24th and 31st December. He reported that revised plans would be recirculated to members.
The Committee commented and sought clarifications in the following areas:
1. The Committee commented that the data in the Report was helpful and the Committee requested data be shown in graphical form and to also include data from prior years to help show the trends, and it was agreed that this would be provided going forwards.
2. The Chief Executive reported that the next quarterly update would provide a written update on the report on the Interim Review which had been commissioned. In summary the report considered whether the service was fit for purpose, had sufficient capacity, looked at communications and whether this could be improved, looking at the utilisation of data and using data to drive the service forward and at the facilities used by the service. The report highlighted that contamination levels had reduced and there would be a measurable action plan from this report.
3. The Committee sought further information on the robustness / quality / lifecycle of the blue bags. It was reported that there had been no widespread issues reported. It was expected that over time there would be further information on this which could be reported. The service had modelled a 10% replacement of bags in each year, however there was no clear data as yet to assess whether this accurately reflected the position. The Committee requested whether there was any data related to this from neighbouring authorities which had adopted the bag strategy. The General Manager agreed that relevant statistics for this would be monitored going forwards.
4. Whether contaminated bins were from the same properties where it was reported that this data was not currently recorded. The Committee commented that going forwards they would like to see this data.
5. Whether there were any plans for proactive communication advising residents that additional bags were available prior to Christmas. It was reported that other authorities had adopted this strategy.
6. Clarification was requested on how the cost of the additional infrastructure was resourced from the additional income received and it was reported that the additional income resulted from a higher price for higher quality (uncontaminated) waste and this price had held up at the start of this year but there were signs that there could be some reductions in price going forwards, however, the quality of the waste was key.
7. How the level of contamination under the prior service compared with the current service, where it was reported that most of the contamination was in the blue bin and there were very low levels of contamination in the paper and card stream. It was agreed that further data would be provided and would include data from the period prior to the implementation of the new service.
8. Whether there were other items of waste which could be recycled, for example tetra packs, where it was reported that the limitation for the joint waste service was the recycling facilities which currently had no local capacity to recycle this waste.
The Chair requested that the General manager take back the Committee’s comments and, on behalf of the Committee, the Chair thanked the Portfolio Holder and the Officers for their attendance. The Officers then left the meeting.