South Scotland

Dumfries and Galloway waste scheme cost concerns raised

Wheelie bins Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A new wheelie bin scheme will replace a multi-bin system which was never rolled out

Concerns have been raised that there is no clear final end cost for a new council waste collection scheme being planned in south-west Scotland.

Dumfries and Galloway Council needs to invest £8.2m on the system to replace one it piloted but never rolled out.

A further £2.8m will be spent on facilities handed back at the end of a private finance initiative (PFI) deal.

Councillor Ivor Hyslop said he was worried that there appeared to be no clear spending cap in place.

The cost of a number of other elements of the new system has still to be determined.

Image caption Mr Hyslop said he had concerns there was no clear "end cost" for the new scheme

"I think there are a lot of concerns out there," said former council leader Mr Hyslop.

"We have brought in various different schemes and every time we get a report back to committee it's another £200,000 or £300,000 - and that's maybe being conservative with a small C.

"Most of them have been about £500,000 with every additional program that comes forward.

"So I think there are concerns where we will actually end up."

Dumfries and Galloway Council currently operates a single wheelie bin system in most of the region, but a multi-bin set-up began to be tested in Wigtownshire in 2014.

'Bit of certainty'

However, the local authority ultimately decided to drop that scheme due to cost and health and safety concerns.

A new three-wheelie bin plan has now been agreed - but it will mean thousands of containers bought for the old system will not be needed.

Mr Hyslop said: "You have to get the balance, I suppose, that you have the public who want to see us doing more recycling - but is it at any cost or is it at a reasonable cost?"

He said he believed people wanted a "wee bit of certainty" so that the final cost could be built into budgets.

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