AFTER being rubbished unmercifully by phone, on social media and in the local press; the Bass Coast Shire Council has admitted it got it wrong not picking up landfill bins in a busy tourist area during the summer holidays.
They come up with a concession for homeowners and visitors.
But far from agreeing to a kerbside pick-up of stuffed 120 litre landfill bins (red lids) on a weekly basis, which they say can’t be done under the present contract, the shire is offering to waive tip fees on the equivalent amount of rubbish, provided you take it to the tip/transfer station yourself.
It must be said, the offer hasn’t pleased everyone.
Hundreds of new messages have greeted the partial back-down by the shire council but one of the posts makes a fair point – it was the previous council that put the new arrangements in play when they signed a 10-year waste contract on the eve of the 2016 elections.
Here’s what the shire had to say online last Thursday:
“Bass Coast Shire Council has acknowledged the need for a solution to dispose of excess landfill waste over the busy summer holiday period, and residents can now take the equivalent volume of a red-lidded landfill bin to any of Council’s waste facilities free of charge, until Friday, 26 January.”
Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Pamela Rothfield, acknowledged the change was a result of “significant community feedback received”, something of an understatement.
“We understand the impact this has had on our community and our visitors and we will take all feedback into consideration for future holiday periods,” Cr Rothfield said.
“We have endeavoured to increase the kerbside collection – but unfortunately this cannot be achieved, as the service is currently operating at maximum capacity. At the moment, it is just not possible to make any changes to the current summer kerbside collection timetable. We have heard the community’s frustrations, and we hope that the free landfill drop off will help ease some of the issues.”
Waste facilities located in Cowes, Grantville and Wonthaggi are open 7 days, and the Inverloch facility is open Saturday to Monday. Locations and opening hours can be found at www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/wastefacilities.
“This is the first summer for the three-bin system which was introduced on September 4, 2017. Results from the new system are exceeding expectations, averaging 80 per cent of waste, which would have previously gone to landfill, now being turned into compost via the new organics system.
Contamination rates are also consistently low, with a consistent average of below one per cent.
“The low contamination rates we have received so far are a wonderful endorsement, that our community is embracing the system and joining our war on waste,” Cr Rothfield said.
Property owners can also increase the size of their landfill bin from a 120 litre bin, to a 240 litre bin service, at a charge of $132.50 per year.
Not everyone was happy with the decision though.
By the end of the day on Friday, the shire had received almost 300 comments on its Facebook page and 100 shares.
Here’s a few of them:
• Steve Waldron: How about a tip credit for all of us that have already paid to empty our bins last week.
• Kayte Stringer: Love how you the council finally decide to listen about your bin system finally. I just wonder if the tourists hadn’t complained would anything be different and really you’re only offering this for them otherwise this free drop off at the tip would be offered all year not just this tourist season and what about the Easter season. Again are you going to be helping out the holiday makers and offering this free drop off then too! Anyway I just think as a ratepayer you should have listened to us and made changes for US not just when the tourists are in town.
• Madeline Colam: In Tassie it’s fortnightly collection all the time. Does this mean that Vic households generate more waste?
• Paul Bennett: How about refunding my time and fuel as well as the six dollars I had to pay at Grantville?
• Kelly Foster: There is an influx of approx 50,000 people to the island over the month of Jan. You really consider that everyone will be physically ABLE to take their bins or delve into bins to re-bag for transport. Red bins are lining the streets still today. Organise an EXTRA pick up, please.
• Elissa Oswin: We have a holiday property which is rented out to tourists and I am having to pay $50 per pickup due to this ridiculous bin system over January! Maybe they should give me a credit for next year’s rates because it’s not like we don’t pay enough rates for bare minimal services anyway! The fact they want to charge us $132 for a larger bin is poor form to say the least.
• Paul S Chipperfield: No the shire should just do weekly pickups.
• Dean Hecker: No – We the community definitely want you to do weekly pickups from next week until the end of the month. It’s not about the shire office decisions it’s about the community decision. You can see rubbish blown everywhere where the birds make holes in overloaded garbage bags. What a joke this is? Will your cleaners clean up the mess at all?
• John Matthews: NO SPIN PLEASE. All holiday periods, long weekends, GP etc have to be factored into the mix. I can’t understand how the previous council failed to acknowledge the massive increase of residents, family, friends and holiday rentals into houses thus increasing the massive rubbish load. It is a very simple solution increase to weekly collections during school holidays, Easter, GP and after long weekends.
Red bins: We got it wrong!