South Gloucestershire garden waste charge to be scrapped

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A charge for collecting garden waste will be "phased out" in South Gloucestershire, the new Conservative administration has confirmed.

The £36 annual levy was introduced in 2014 under the previous council which was run on a committee system with members from all parties.

But the charge was described by the Tories as a "bin tax".

Conservative leader Matthew Riddle said the charge would be ended now his party has overall control at the council.

The new collection policy, which saw households opt in to have their garden waste collected, cost £650,000 to set up.

Home owners can also buy green waste sacks which are collected on a pay-per-use basis.

Mr Riddle said his party - which gained control of the council on Thursday - would look to reduce the charge in the coming year but could not close the scheme down immediately.

"To eliminate it completely would cost £2m and that's difficult money to find in these difficult times," he said.

A council spokeswoman said: "The £2m figure includes the loss of income from the opt in service, retaining the additional recycling services such as plastics recycling and extra vehicle costs.

"There would also be one-off implementation costs."

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