Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Press Release: Looney Slams Bin Charge Hike in South Dublin

Cllr Dermot Looney, a Labour Party representative on South Dublin County Council, has said news of an increase in bin charges in South Dublin is a further blow to hard-pressed local residents. Charges for the standard black bin and newly-introduced brown bin will increase by almost a third from August 1st. Charges for black bins, currently at €8 per lift, will rise to €10.50, while the charge for brown bins, which deal with food and garden waste, is set to rise from €4 per lift to €5.25. Looney has said that the announcement could mean an extra €100 per year burden on local families.

“Local residents are already bearing the brunt of the recession with job losses, pay cuts and cutbacks to community services,” said Cllr Looney. “One of the few hoped-for benefits would have been a freeze on costs due to the low inflation or even deflation in the economy. Instead, though, one of the necessary services upon which hard-pressed local residents rely is set to jump by a third.”

“For a large family who need to leave out a black bin and a brown bin every two weeks, this represents an increase of €97.50, from €312 per annum to €409.50. As well as the economic cost to local people, there is evidence to show an environmental impact to such decisions, with fly-tipping and dumping set to rise.”

“The increases come in part from an EU decision to level the playing field between public and private waste operators, meaning that local authorities now have to charge VAT on their bin collections; great news for private waste companies, but not for local citizens. Furthermore, the fact that South Dublin County Council receive less per head of population than any other local authority from Minister Gormley’s Local Government Fund means that Council finances are already at a stretch.”

“These increases are an executive function of the Council, meaning that they are introduced by Council officials without the involvement of local elected representatives. Nevertheless, I will be calling on officials to cancel the increase and safeguard the under-threat waiver system at the full Council meeting next Monday.”