Rochdale first to say 'No' to increased waste charges

July 23, 2009 12:00 AM

Deputy Leader of Rochdale Council, Councillor Irene Davidson, calling on the new waste charge to be reversed!Rochdale Borough Council has become the first Council in Greater Manchester to demand a complete reversal of the increased waste charges that have devastated local businesses.

The call, which was put forward in a Notice of Motion at this week's Full Council Meeting by the Liberal Democrats, comes after local businesses were told in June that waste disposal charges were to increase to £56 per half tonne - an increase of almost 500%!

In a stinging attack, Deputy Leader of Rochdale Council Councillor Irene Davidson has accused private company Viridor Laing, the company that has the waste and recycling contract for Greater Manchester, of imposing an "extortionate increase in charges."

Councillor Davidson said: "I am absolutely disgusted that Viridor Laing has had the cheek to introduce this outrageous increase without proper consultation but more importantly without approval from the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority. Only this week have we seen the illegal dumping of animal bones in my ward of Milnrow and I can only put down such acts as a result of these charges."

Leader of Rochdale Council, Councillor Alan Taylor, who seconded the motion said: "In 2001, when I was a green grocer on Spotland Road, I paid £2.26 for a 40kg load which was a van full of cardboard. I use to dispose of my waste once a week and with these new charges this would now cost me £56. This is simply unacceptable. Businesses are being advertised to wait until they have half a tonne to save money, but that would have taken three months in my case and businesses can't store large amounts of waste for months, particularly food waste."

Councillor Taylor added: "It is a death blow to small businesses."

Both opposition parties supported the motion with Conservative Councillor Anne Metcalfe adding: "The increase is untimely and insensitive. We must get this ridiculous decision reversed."

Rochdale MP Paul Rowen said: "I am delighted that this Council is yet again leading the way in supporting our local business. I have had many discussions over the last few weeks with local businesses that have put it clearly to me that these charges could result in them going out of businesses. I am calling on the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority to totally reverse this scandalous charge."

Below is the Notice in Motion in full:

Waste Disposal Charges:

This Council recognises the need to do everything possible to help businesses in Rochdale during the current recession.

That this Council notes with concern the decision to introduce a new, controversial £56 minimum charge for the disposal of half a tonne waste for local businesses across the Rochdale Borough and the whole of Greater Manchester.

That this Council recognises that the new charge will have a detrimental consequence on local businesses during these hard economic times. That this Council also notes that this heavy handed approach to charging businesses may result in more businesses folding and jobs being lost across the Rochdale Borough and Greater Manchester.

That this Council calls on the its two members of the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority, the three party leaders and local MPs Paul Rowen and Jim Dobbin to lead the fight against this crazy decision.

That the Council asks the Chief Executive to write to all members of the Greater Manchester Disposal Authority requesting that this issue is part of a future agenda of the authority and requests that it be reversed to support our business community.