I believe that the garden waste service charge is an unfair and unjust policy that needs to be scrapped.

In 2004 the free collection of garden waste was introduced in North Kesteven by the Tory-controlled District Council. In 2013 the decision was made to charge residents for the collection of garden waste despite them acknowledging it would be unpopular with residents. Those who did not or could not pay lost the service.

Here’s an excerpt from an NKDC Executive Board report from 2015:

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 allows a Waste Collection Authority to ‘recover a reasonable charge for the collection of the waste from the person who made the request’ in respect of garden waste.’ Although there is no definition of reasonable charge it is taken to indicate that the full costs of collection can be recovered.

It seems the Tories saw ‘recover a reasonable charge’ to mean recover the entire charge. To me, that is unacceptable.

In the report it was proposed that the service charge be increased by a whopping 20% to recover all of the costs associated with the service (there was me thinking they were a public service), and they anticipated that if they retained 100% of the service users the service would have a surplus by 2017/18. The charge was increased after a Council vote that was won 36-3.

The residents of Waddington West and North Kesteven will not be treated like cash cows by the Tories.

The service charge is unfair, and if elected I will seek to scrap the charge in its entirety. It’s about time we ended the charge and ended the Tories’ dominance over decision making in North Kesteven District Council.

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