Is it time to bag, rubbish bags?
A user pays approach for rubbish bags could be on the cards for urban residents of MatamataPiako.
The proposed changes were part of the Matamata-Piako District Council’s community consultation plan, ‘‘Love your district, reduce your waste’’ and as part of The Right Debate, which it planned to discuss at its meeting this week.
The plan sought feedback on the 10 initiatives to reduce waste going into landfill.
Fliers were handed out with rubbish bags earlier this year and council received 87 survey responses.
Thirty-four responders supported a change to the rubbish bag system, with 45 per cent considering the initiative important.
Currently, ratepayers pay a targeted rate for waste and recycling collection. It included a 60 litre council rubbish bag and recycling bin weekly.
The targeted rate was $153.08 in the 2017/18 financial year.
Proposed changes included the removal of the voucher for 52 rubbish bags, but keeping the same waste collection service. It meant urban residents would need to purchase rubbish bags from a retailer, but at a fixed price set by council.
The council would reduce the rates for waste from $153 to $29.
The cost of 52 bags at $2 each and residual price of $29 would total $133 per year.
The report suggested advantages such as residents only paying per use, council monitoring waste disposal and encouraging reduced waste per household while the disadvantages included the cost of bags no longer being covered by rates and tenants facing cost increases if landlords fail to pass the savings on.
The changes would align Matamata-Piako with ThamesCoromadel and Hauraki district councils, which currently use a similar system.
The Right Debate initiative was adopted from the Joint Waste Minimisation and Minimisation Plan.
Of the 87 survey responses to the consultation, 24 were from Matamata, 33 from Morrinsville and 18 from Te Aroha. Twelve responders did not state location.
Other initiatives in The Right Debate included encouraging the development of a resource recycling centre, waste minimisation grant supporting ‘‘on the ground’’ waste minimisation projects and more visibility to the Love Food, Hate Waste campaign.
Matamata-Piako Council may remove council bags from rates, instead adopting a user pays system.