Recycling plans back on the table

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The future of several local recycling centres will be under the spotlight again today (Tuesday), as Angus Council’s communities committee meet to discuss the matter.

The report has outlined 10 recommendations for the committee. They are being recommended to note the severe financial pressures facing Angus Council and agree the following:

investment of approximately £135,000 in the existing recycling centre at Cairnie, Arbroath, to improve the layout of the facility and enhance reuse and recycling provision;

investment of approximately £230,000 in the existing recycling centre at Broomfield Road, Montrose, to improve the layout of the facility and enhance reuse and recycling provision;

provision of a new recycling centre to serve Forfar and Kirriemuir and remit the Head of Regulatory and Protective Services to identify a suitable location and bring forward a planning application to Development Standards Committee;

closure of Brechin Recycling Centre once improvement works at Montrose Recycling Centre have been completed, Carnoustie Recycling Centre once improvement works at Arbroath Recycling Centre have been completed, Monifieth Recycling Centre once improvement works at Arbroath Recycling Centre have been completed’ Forfar and Kirriemuir recycling centres upon completion of the new facility as outlined above;

remit the Head of Regulatory and Protective Services to agree a shared services arrangement with Dundee City Council that would allow Angus residents to access the recycling centre located at Baldovie, Dundee;

end servicing of skips from the recycling centre currently managed by the Edzell Village Improvement Society (EVIS).

Following the publication of the council papers ahead of the meeting, several protests were arranged at Carnoustie and Brechin. A further protest is scheduled to take place today at 1.30pm at the Town and County Buildings in Forfar, ahead of the communities committee meeting at 2pm.

An Angus-wide survey on recycling, organised by Our Carnoustie, revealed 57 percent of the 877 respondents said they would be willing to pay to use council recycling centre. However, the report has ruled out that prospect on legal and practical grounds, adding that the introduction of a charge “would potentially contravene the Environmental Protection Act 1990, and the introduction of a barrier or ticket type system would potentially exacerbate queues and traffic congestion on site”.

The idea to scrap several of the centres is part of a cost saving measure, with the move estimated to make ongoing savings of £258,000. The report also details that there is a sum of £1,454,000 included the capital plan for the development of “new and existing” recycling centres. The report continues: “Approximately £230,000 will be required to upgrade the Montrose centre, £130,000 to upgrade the Arbroath centre, with the remainder being required for the proposed new site to replace Forfar and Kirriemuir.”

The report acknowledges the proposals would results in “significant changes in service delivery” but adds the changes are “unavoidable” as a result of the “reductions that must be made to budgets in areas of significant spend”.

The move would also see a reduction in staff, equivalent to six full time posts. The report outlined that the reductions would be “mainly through natural turnover of staff and the cessation of temporary contracts”, adding any redundancies or early retirements will be accounted for in the existing budget for Regulatory and Protective Services.

Staff affected by the recommendations have already been briefed on the matter, along with the relevant trade unions, but further consultations would take place before and during the implementation.