Sunday 26 May 2019

Rapid response crew making an instant impact on dumping

Recent dumping discovered at Scarke
Recent dumping discovered at Scarke

David Looby

The newly formed emergency response crew for dumping has made an instant impact on the New Ross district.

Speaking at the monthly meeting of New Ross Municipal council, Cllr Anthony Connick complemented the crew's work, saying any time he reports a dumping incident the rubbish is collected very quickly. 'It's incredible stuff and the app on the phone is great.'

Cathaoirleach Cllr John Fleming said a huge amount of dumping is still going on. He said everyone should have a refuse service in the same way everyone should have a TV licence. Cllr Michael Whelan said rubbish is being picked up by the rapid response crew very quickly. 'Signs have gone up in Ballycullane near by the graveyard so there is no more dumping there but this morning bags were found 100 yards up the road.'

Cllr Michael Sheehan said whenever a house is allocated to a council tenant the tenant should be asked which refuse collection company they are using.

'Before they sign the contract they should be asked to provide evidence that they have a contract for a refuse service. Many don't but they do have a lot of refuse.'

Housing officer Martina O'Donoghue said under new environment department bye-laws officials can call to any door and ask for such proof.

Cllr Michael Sheehan said there is a form council tenants have to complete each year, calling for a line to be added to it to that effect.

'A lot of people do pay for the service but for others a trailer pulls up and it's gone.'

Cllr Willie Fitzharris said he understands it is a condition of planning that residents have to have a refuse service, but planning officer James Lavin disagreed, saying a space for the storage of bins is all that is required.

Cllr Connick said: 'I pay €288 for my bins to be collected every year,' adding that the council should investigate whether they can add a sum on to the tenant's rent to incorporate the collection of their waste.

Mr Lavin said some people bring their rubbish to a waste bin service at petrol stations or to a landfill.

Cllr Connick said by charging people at source it will counter balance the costs incurred by council staff going out to collect rubbish and go through it and investigate who was responsible.

'We collected 22 bags in the Bawnmore. It was all household rubbish. Putting €5 on their rent book would make a lot more sense.'

Cllr Sheehan said there have been incidences where rubbish has been stored in council tenant's back yards, front yards and even under the stairs.

Cllr Larry O'Brien said: 'We are talking about this for years. We have spent tens of thousands on new vehicles, resourcing a crew to pick up someone's rubbish. It would be simple to add it to a tenancy agreement. There are two refuse collection companies in the county. If you drive down the road you will see the bins outside people's house. This is not rocket science to solve.'

Cllr Fleming sought a breakdown of the costs associated with collecting rubbish in the district. Cllr Whelan asked if private and social housing residents could be written to and asked to provide proof they have paid for a refuse collection service.

New Ross Standard