Fly-tipping impact of DIY waste charges down-played as £500,000 savings goal is met
PUBLISHED: 13:19 13 August 2019 | UPDATED: 16:38 14 August 2019
Council officers have reiterated that they do not feel changes to charges at recycling centres seen led to a rise in fly-tipping in the county.
On April 1, 2018, new charges were brought in relating to DIY waste at Norfolk's tips, with the scrapping of a free allowance for construction and demolition materials.
Widespread fears were expressed in the run-up to the change that as a result, people would opt to fly-tip this waste rather than pay the new fees.
However, council officers have reiterated claims that this has not been the case - despite a year-on-year increase in incidents.
The issue was discussed by members of Broadland Council's scrutiny committee on Wednesday, at which Tony Garland, the councils environmental health officer, played down the link.
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In the financial year following the introduction of the new charges, the district did see an increase in incidents - from 428 to 497 - however, this figure was still lower than the 588 reported in 2016/17.
He said: "While there was a year-on-year rise the number was still far lower than the number the prior to that, so we do not feel it has set a trend."
However, the figures presented only take into account fly-tips on council land and private land reported to the council.
Joel Hull, Norfolk County Council's head of waste, said: "Private land owners can report incidents of fly-tipping, but sometimes they do not do this."
Mr Hull added that the changes had achieved its ambition of providing £500,000 of savings for the county council - though it remains to be seen whether this will be replicated for a second year.
He added: "The charges are just there to cover the cost of disposing of the waste and do not make and profit, but the aim of saving more than £500,000 in the first year has been achieved."