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City protest planned as bin service is privatised

A DUBLIN local authority was due to face strong opposition today over its decision to sell off its waste collection service.

Householders and bin staff arranged to gather at the offices of South Dublin County Council to protest against the move.

It was announced last week that Clondalkin-based firm Greyhound Recycling and Recovery is to collect domestic rubbish on behalf of the local authority after a successful bid.

However, the decision has not been met with universal approval and an attempt is even being made to block the transfer of responsibilities.

Local councillor Gino Kenny was tabling a section 140 motion at an emergency council meeting today in a bid to reverse the deal.

"The question of waste management was taken out of the hands of the elected representatives by the previous government but we are looking at invoking section 140 of the Local Government Act 2001 to force the manager's hand on this.

"At the very least we will find out if a majority of the elected reps really are against this," he said.

Greyhound, which will begin operating the service from April 4, will take on some of the 50 staff currently employed by the council to provide the service.

The remaining employees will be redeployed within the local authority.

An activist in the Tallaght area, Mick Murphy, told the Herald there was a "complete lack of an agreement" between the local authority and the bin staff.


Mr Murphy, of the Socialist Party, said the "privatisation" of the service "opens up the system to at least half a dozen companies".

"It is also clear that over time waivers will disappear altogether as they have in other areas where the service was privatised. We must continue to register our opposition to the wrecking of an essential public service in this way," he said.

Greyhound will provide the service to more than 70,000 homes in the jurisdiction, which covers areas like Tallaght, Clondalkin and Lucan.

The company has promised to honour all existing waivers, which apply to low-income customers, and not to increase bin fees.