The Deputy Leader of Pendle Council, Colne Liberal Democrat Councillor
Tony Greaves, has sounded the alarm over the news that Lancashire County
Council is going to end its annual payment to Pendle Council towards the
costs of recycling domestic waste, of some three quarters of a million
pounds as from next April.
Councillor Greaves said: “This is a hammer blow to people in Pendle and
to Pendle Council which is already facing spending cuts of three to four
million pounds in the next three years – out of a net expenditure budget
of only around £14 million. People in Pendle will be excused for thinking
that LCC are robbing them of no less than three quarters of a million
pounds worth of local services.”
The Council’s total spending on collecting domestic waste and recycling
is around £2.7 million. The Council now has the choice of cutting its
collection services by this amount, or cutting other services instead –
or a mixture of the two.
Councillor Greaves added: “This is a horrific situation in which
decisions have to be made quickly. I am sorry to say that LCC have left
the announcement to the last possible moment and landed us in it.
“The recent survey report of refuse collection in all the different
districts in Lancashire shows plainly that Pendle will be hardest hit –
we are already in the top two most efficient collection authorities in
the County and there is not much more to be gained from increasing
collection efficiencies. Most of it has already happened.”
Councillor Greaves’ Liberal colleague, County Councillor David Whipp, who
also sits on Pendle Council, said that people in Pendle were suffering a
dreadful double whammy. He said: “They are already suffering from the
Conservative Government that is turning the screw to squeeze Pendle’s
budget year after year, forcing the Council to cut and cut its spending.
And now we have the new Conservative County Council stripping away its
funding towards the refuse and recycling services that by law it is
demanding from Pendle.
”It is a shocking and impossible situation.”
Other District Councils in Lancashire are in the same boat as LCC plan to
stop their contributions of some £10 million across the County.