No garden waste collection until 2022
Local Liberal Democrats have been shocked to learn that Woking's garden waste will not be collected until 2022.
The service has been suspended several times over the summer, with the latest hold on collections due to end on 10 September. Currently, garden waste bins are not being emptied and bulky waste collections are not available.
Conservative Cllr Kevin Davis, wrote to councillors on 8 September announcing the suspension of the service for an indeterminate time, likely to run into 2022. He advised that garden waste subscribers would be informed by letter and that they have the option to cancel and receive a pro-rate refund. Subscribers will be compensated for missed collections but how that will be done is not yet known. Amey, who provide the service to Woking and other Surrey boroughs, are taking some action to resolve the crisis and are training 9 new drivers, but this process will take time.
"Residents have overflowing bins, or extra bags of green waste at a busy time in the garden. They can take their green waste to the Community Recycling Centre, but this is at an extra cost for those whose vehicle is a van, unavailable to those without a vehicle and may be challenging for older residents or those with a disability," said Liberal Democrat Leader Cllr Ann-Marie Barker "I have heard reports of green waste dumped on local commons and open spaces".
"We have had no update on the bulky waste collection service offered by the Council. With that service unavailable I am concerned we may suffer even more fly-tipping locally" continued Cllr Barker.
Cllr Barker has asked the Council:
- For an update on the suspension of bulky waste collection services - to be told SERCO are doing a good job of collecting fly tipping
- To ask Surrey County Council to a) offer assistance for older residents or those with mobility issues at Martyrs Lane and other recycling centres.b) relax rules on vans at recycling centres, for those bringing garden waste.
- To provide information on reimbursement for missed collections promptly.
"We all know a number of factors have caused this crisis," said Cllr Barker. "With the pingdemic over and the summer holiday period ended, the lack of drivers is clearly impacted by a backlog of HGV tests due to Covid; but it is likely those shortages could have been managed if we hadn't lost so many European drivers who were driven home by Brexit."