October 25 2014 Latest news:
Annabelle Dickson, Political Editor
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Proposals which would see Norfolk families charged for using some of the county’s recycling centres have been given the thumbs-down by EDP24 and EveningNews24 online readers.
Earlier this week we revealed how Tory ministers have sent a strongly-worded letter warning Labour council leader George Nobbs that any move to makea a £2 charge would increase the risk of fly-tipping.
The intervention, in a letter co-signed by local government minister Brandon Lewis, MP for Great Yarmouth, and waste minister Dan Rogerson, also suggests that under the law waste should be accepted free of charge.
Recycling centres in Ashill, Bergh Apton, Docking, Heacham, Snetterton, Strumpshaw, Wells, Worstead and Wymondham could introduce a £2 charge under the council's plans to cut costs and make £189m of savings. Following the story, 464 people took part in an online survey asking what people thought of the plans.
Of those, 91pc of those who took part said they wouldn’t pay £2 to use their recycling centre and that the plan should be scrapped, but 9pc said they would.
In response to the original story, Norfolk County Council said 11 of Norfolk's other main recycling centres would still be free "Charging a small fee at nine of our smaller sites from 2016 is one way of keeping all 20 open in the face of very significant cuts in Government funding that our county is having to deal with," the council said. County Hall says it needs to bridge a spending gap of £66.5m in 2014/15 and £189m over the next three years. There has already been opposition in some quarters of County Hall with the charge to visit the smaller recycling centres apparently only saving around £280,000. And in a report detailing the consultation responses the council said 268 out of 394 of those who responded did not support this proposal, with most of the responses that were against it citing concerns about fly-tipping.