Fees to create fairer system

NEW landfill fees will bring Gloucester into line with other councils across the State and create additional revenue streams, the service provider says, but councillors have raised concerns that it could be seen as double dipping.

Work at the tip has been progressing over the past few months.

Work at the tip has been progressing over the past few months.

From October 1 it will cost people to dump unsorted waste at the Gloucester landfill.

At present only commercial businesses and non-residents are charged a gate fee for using the landfill.

Council says the current system, where urban householders pay both a waste management charge of $92.40 per annum and a domestic waste management charge of $509, is inequitable.

The new gate fees mean rural households, who currently only pay the $92.40 waste management charge, would be substantially impacted.

Council has anticipated several benefits from introducing fees and charges for use of the tip including addressing the inequities between what urban and rural households currently pay, encouraging people to sort their waste before dumping it and bringing the shire into line with other councils across the State who charge to use their landfills.

But not all councillors were convinced.

“I think it’s double dipping,” Katheryn Smith said.

“I won’t be happy until we work out what we’re doing on our rates notice as well.”

The additional income will relieve, to some extent, the financial burned on council imposed by the State government’s waste levy.

A report to council by consultants Mike Ritchie and Associates determined council was subsidising ratepayers by between $14.07 and $77.35 for every tonne of waste dumped at the landfill.

General manager Danny Green said council would revisit its waste fees and charges in the next 12 months.

“This will allow us to get a handle on how we’re actually going,” he said.

“We can’t move solely to a user-pays system in the first year because we run the risk of not managing our costs.”

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