FED-UP residents in the district have hit out at another hike in the cost of disposing of their green waste.
Last year Stratford District Council (SDC) axed free collections of garden waste and introduced a £40 annual fee – cut to £35 as an ‘early bird’ incentive to encourage householders to sign up.
The aim, said the authority, was to raise £700,000 to cover the cost of running the service but it proved so popular the council actually raised £1.7million.
But SDC has now upped the price of the annual cost to £42 per green waste bin – with no early discount.
Alcester resident Neil Coombes demanded to know where all the money had gone.
“In the first year they made a hell of a lot of money on it – what have they done with it all? I think it’s just plain greedy.
“I heard it’s to recover losses after their recycling plant burnt down last year – but that should have been covered by the insurance.
“And now it’s gone up by another £2 – there’s just no justification for it.”
Alcester councillor and SDC Lib-Dem leader Susan Juned said four in five households in the district had joined the paid-for scheme in 2021.
“We were told then that it was just to cover costs but I think they’ve made a tidy profit from this,” she said.
“They now say putting the cost up to £42 is to cover inflation and rising fuel prices, but they know that residents too are facing rising costs and inflation.
“I also asked why there was no early bird incentive this year and simply did not get a reply.”
She also took aim at the government which had previously said local authorities would be compensated for offering free waste collections.
Coun Juned said: “And of course, they never did it.
“Now because of their finances nearly every local authority charges for green waste collection because they felt they had no choice.
“What we need is some joined up thinking on waste collection and disposal and we’re not getting it.”
A spokesperson for Stratford District Council said the increase represented inflation and rising fuel costs.
They added: “The early bird offer was implemented in 2021 as it was a new chargeable scheme at that time, designed to raise awareness about the scheme and to encourage people to sign up for its initial start in April 2021.”