City of Joondalup bulk hard waste collection to continue with skip bin method despite support to reintroduce verge collections

Bulk rubbish collection in Joondalup before the changes came in to effect. Picture: Martin Kennealey d451220
Bulk rubbish collection in Joondalup before the changes came in to effect. Picture: Martin Kennealey d451220

CITY of Joondalup’s bulk hard waste collection will continue with the skip bin method despite a petition to reinstate scheduled verge collections.

Councillors at last month’s meeting voted 11-1 not to bring back the scheduled service after assessing a 493-signature petition that was received in July.

Infrastructure services director Nico Claassen said with the old verge collection system the City collected more bulk hard waste per household than any other local government in Australia and more than double the WA average.

He said the cost of waste disposal was continuing to rise, with the landfill levy increasing to $70 per tonne on July 1 as well as the Mindarie Regional Council gate fee now at $180 per tonne.

“Since the introduction of the on-request system, the City has increased its overall diversion from just under 50 per cent to just under 60 per cent,” he said.

“This change has also reduced the cost by about $1.8 million.

“Reverting back to a scheduled service would cost about $2.3 million.”

He said the petition “did not provide any reasons for returning to the previous scheduled bulk hard waste service”.

However, he said the City did review queries and issues raised by residents, which included requests for additional skip bins, mattress and white good collections and concerns for some residents to lift and place items into the skip bins.

Therefore councillors voted to approve an additional 3 cubic metre skip bin at a charge to residents based on the City’s contracted rate for collection and processing and to allow one collection of up to six mattresses and one collection of up to four white good items per year, an increase from the one item each allowed previously.

Mr Claassen estimated the cost of an extra skip bin could be about $80-$90 to deliver, collect and dispose of the waste.

At the briefing, Edgewater resident Juehui Quan said the City’s on-request system had limitations including the size of the bin requiring items to be broken down, sometimes with power tools, health and safety risks for older residents and timing with people having to wait “usually two weeks” for a bin.

Mayor Albert Jacob said that was “a valid concern” and moved an alternative motion to “explore and consider further options to provide assistance to those residents that cannot load bulk hard waste items from the verge into the skip bin”.

Cr Christopher May said while he agreed with the changes, he had made an election commitment to support reinstatement of the scheduled verge collection system and would be voting against the motion.

Mr Jacob took the opportunity to congratulate the council for its “excellent decision” that has seen resource recovery go from about 2 per cent to more than 50 per cent for bulk hard waste.

He added it was a “far more convenient service” and being on-demand meant there was no “rubbish on verges for weeks and people scouring those verges”.

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