The Milton Keynes Conservatives are warning MK Council against putting residents in a bin bag ‘straitjacket’ under new wheelie bin proposals. 3,000 households have been part of a trial to introduce four wheelie bins rather than bags on the kerb.
But the new plans could limit the amount of waste collected with MK Council looking to clamp down on side-waste, which often occurred when residents filled up their wheelie bin and put their rubbish sacks to the side.
MK Council guidance currently states: “Please do not place additional waste or recycling to the side of wheeled bins.”
The Conservatives say this will punish families wanting to recycle and that rationing collections would push fly-tipping numbers up even higher locally.
The wheelie bin pilot has highlighted the difficulty residents face in containing all their waste in the bins provided.
A public survey commissioned by MK Council showed that 39% of respondents did not have enough room to put all their waste and recycling in the correct bins, while 45% had to put out extra recycling or rubbish sacks outside of the wheelie bins.
The problem is worse for households that have been provided with smaller bin boxes because they cannot fit multiple wheelie bins at their properties with 57% saying they did not have the space.
The Conservatives are calling on the coalition to be flexible with their side-waste policy.
Cllr Dan Gilbert, the Environment and Waste spokesperson for the Conservatives, said:
“Busy households will be worried that the shift to wheelie bins could mean a limit on the amount of waste that can be collected and recycled each week.
Wheelie bins could help to prevent litter from split bags, but it is a big step to say you can no longer put bags on the kerb once your wheelie bin is full.
We’ve seen huge spikes in waste volumes through lockdown and need to ensure our waste policies reflect the changes in people’s lifestyles.
We are calling on the Labour and Lib Dem partnership to ensure a flexible policy for side-waste. To be the greenest city there should be no cap on recycling.”