GREEN WASTE: Opponents of annual charge thank councillor for live chat

Andrew Baldwin (Con, Holbrook East)
Andrew Baldwin (Con, Holbrook East)

Ardent opponents of the council’s decision to introduce an annual green waste charge thanked the councillor in charge of the scheme for answering their questions last night.

Andrew Baldwin (Con, Holbrook East), Horsham District Council’s cabinet member for the environment, was answering questions during a Facebook live chat on Thursday February 7.

He confirmed that 5,500 households have already signed up for the scheme out of around 55,000 in the Horsham district.

The £29 annual charge was agreed as part of HDC’s medium-term financial strategy in December 2012, as they aim for a 40 per cent takeup of the scheme.

Mr Baldwin confirmed that they had no plans for introducing fortnightly household waste collections, and said that £29 a year for disposing green waste, or under 60p a collection, was entirely reasonable.

He was later corrected that the charge worked out at £1.12 a collection and under 60p a week.

Other questions included how much the administration of the scheme would cost, why the council could not hold a referendum, what people should do with unwanted bins, and how the rules applied to those living in flats.

Mr Baldwin added: “When setting the budget this year, in light of the very difficult financial circumstances the country is in, difficult decisions had to be made.

“This included freezing our portion of council tax for the fourth year running and making a modest charge for garden waste collections.

“I understand that not everyone will agree with the decision. We will see what the uptake is and review the scheme during the year.”

To view the full question and answers visit a replay of our { live blog|live blog}.

Horsham District Council also has a Frequently Asked Questions page on its website.