New powers to tackle contaminated recycling bins

Burgundy recycling bin
Burgundy recycling bin

Repeat offenders who put the wrong materials in their recycling bins could be fined £75 as part of fresh measures being introduced.

A new initiative is set to tackle Chichester district households who persistently place items in their burgundy bins which could contaminate an entire collection round and lead to a truck load going to landfill.

In response to this problem Chichester District Council has put together a clear policy on how it responds to contaminated recycling bins.

The Contaminated Recycling Bin Policy, which is due to be approved by cabinet members next month (Tuesday February 6), details a two-stage process where on ‘rare occasions’ a £75 penalty notice could be considered for residents who persistently put contaminated materials in their recycling bins.

If the collection crew find a noticeable amount of contaminates in a recycling bin it will not be emptied and reported with and an information tag tied to the handle.

The council will write to the resident and will not return to empty a bin until the next scheduled collection.

If the issue persists further action could include a reminder letter being sent, a visit to the resident’s property, and warnings about the possibility of a fixed penalty.

The second stage would start with the council sending a written notice, explaining the resident has 30 days to comply.

If the breach continues or the residents commits a similar breach within 12 months, a notice of intent will be issued setting out the reasons for considering a fixed penalty.

The resident has 28 days to explain why they should not be penalised, and if unsuccessful they will be fined £75.

If they pay within 14 days this will be reduced to £60.

According to the policy: “Whilst bin contamination levels across the district are generally low, we appreciate that residents can inadvertently put the wrong items in their recycling bin and we provide advice and information to help residents in their efforts to recycle.

“Unfortunately, there are occasions where some bins are contaminated on a regular basis and will remain unemptied unless the items are removed by the resident. In these circumstances further action may be necessary.”

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