Dáil told Minister monitoring refuse-collection service

Independent TD Joan Collins rails against ‘sharp practice’ by waste companies

Joan Collins: an exorbitant increase in waste charges from July 1st. Photograph: The Irish Times

Joan Collins: an exorbitant increase in waste charges from July 1st. Photograph: The Irish Times

 

Minister for Housing Simon Coveney is monitoring the operation of the bin-collection service, the Dáil was told.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said the spirit of the legislation setting up the service was to allow people to think differently about the waste put in bins.

The charges were 11 cent for a black bin of residual waste and six cent for a brown bin of organic waste, with a zero charge for green bins.

“Given the concern expressed and because of the fact that numerous bin companies are operating in the greater Dublin area, the position is being monitored carefully by the Minister.’’

Mr Kenny said the legislation was set in such a way that people would understand clearly that better use of the brown and green bins would reduce the amount to be placed in the black bin and that, therefore, charges could not rise.

Exorbitant increase

The Taoiseach was replying to Independent TD Joan Collins, who said there would be an exorbitant increase in waste charges from July 1st.“How can the Government stand over these charges and the sharp practices in which waste companies are engaged?’’

Ms Collins said Greyhound’s current service charge of €59.95 was set to increase to €169 annually. “The charge must be paid before a bin is lifted.’’

She said the company would charge 35 cent per kilogram of black bin waste and 23 cent per kilogram of brown bin waste.

The service charge imposed by Thorntons was set to rise from €50 to €104, while its rates for black and grey bin waste would be similar to those charged by Greyhound. “Waste disposal is a cartel in which there is no competition. Competition has meant increasing waste charges.’’

Mr Kenny said it would be a criminal offence for a cartel to operate in respect of bin charges and the collection of bins. It would be a matter for investigation by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission.

He said the theory and spirit behind the legislation drafted on the issue was that it would not be a new charge in respect of waste being collected. It would be a new way of thinking about how people could reduce their charges by using brown and green bins to a greater extent for recyclables, food and so on.

Ms Collins said there were multinationals and profit-making companies involved. “The Taoiseach should initiate an investigation into the cartels.’’