The Tribune (NZ) - - CONVERSATIONS -

There is se­ri­ous con­cern about pro­pos­als to pro­vide kerb­side waste pick-up ser­vices in Manawatu ru­ral ar­eas and to close Mo­bile Re­cy­cling Cen­tres cur­rently avail­able in vil­lages. The coun­cil’s at­tempts to ob­tain prop­erty own­ers’ opin­ions of these as­pects of its Draft Plan has had lit­tle suc­cess, since there has been no sim­ple ac­cess to ru­ral prop­erty own­ers be­cause of lim­ited mail ser­vice (this ac­cess dif­fi­culty has also been cited as a po­ten­tial fac­tor in lim­it­ing waste pick-up).

Op­po­nents of the con­cept have sug­gested that prop­erty-owner-week­enders and ca­sual hol­i­day­mak­ers would not wish to sched­ule waste col­lec­tion re­quire­ments into their en­ter­prises.

They point to the prac­ti­cal­ity of the re­gion’s ex­ist­ing MRCs (Mo­bile Re­cy­cling Cen­tres), pro­vid­ing ‘al­ways ready’ waste dis­posal de­pots. Hi­matangi Beach users tell us their MRC also pro­vides a sec­ondary so­cial re­source, with over-the-bin con­ver­sa­tions giv­ing folks an op­por­tu­nity to share val­ued com­mu­nity in­for­ma­tion.

The plan­ners’ pro­pos­als have trick­led down be­lat­edly to some ru­ral res­i­dents; most are un­able to ob­tain in­for­ma­tion or meet time lim­its spec­i­fied.

The in­ad­e­qua­cies of the pro­pos­als are ev­i­dent, sug­gest­ing a fail­ure to com­pre­hend res­i­dents’ estab­lished com­mit­ments or to recog­nise the value of ex­ist­ing re­cy­cling cen­tres to ru­ral/ hol­i­day-mak­ing com­mu­ni­ties.

Weekly kerb­side waste col­lec­tion is un­suited to com­mu­ni­ties where di­verse in­ter­ests and tran­sient el­e­ments need to be served.

If any­thing, we should be giv­ing ex­ist­ing ser­vices ad­di­tional sup­port and sup­ple­ment­ing on­go­ing poli­cies to en­sure fewer ex­cuses can be made to ab­solve those (res­i­dents or vis­i­tors) who dump waste around our beau­ti­ful coun­try­side.

Gordon McShean, Hi­matangi Beach

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