by Alan Jacques
SINN Féin General Election candidate Maurice Quinlivan has described plans by Environment Minister Alan Kelly to make people start paying for their recycling as “the final sting from a dying government”.
Controversy has arisen over new ‘pay-by-weight’ legislation, coming into effect this summer, which will see new charges for green recycling bins.
Cllr Quinlivan has said that the signing off on Minister Kelly’s plans will see the Government leave a trail of new taxes and cuts behind as their legacy. He also warned that these new charges will lead to less materials being recycled and an increase in illegal dumping.
“Forcing people to pay for their recycling is a final slap in the face by Fine Gael and Labour who are leaving behind a legacy of cuts and stealth taxes. Forcing people to pay to recycle their waste will only lead to less material being recycled, more being burned in domestic fires and an increase in illegal dumping,” Cllr Quinlivan predicts.
It is believed that the new charges are to be implemented by July this year, and will add up to €100 extra on refuse charges for households.
Cllr Quinlivan went onto point out that a lot of good work has been done over the recent past to ensure people are recycling as much of their refuse as possible. People, he said, recycle to help protect the environment and as a means to keeping their waste bills down.
“This new stealth tax will reverse that good work and will be counterproductive as it will result in an increase in illegal dumping and less materials getting recycled, ultimately damaging the environment and inflicting additional financial pressures on already hard hit families,” the City North representative commented.
“It seems that the political establishment is hell-bent on making refuse collection increasingly unaffordable for ordinary people. We had an excellent bin waiver system here in the city until it was gutted at the behest of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Labour Party as part of the council merger process.
“There is no recovery for the vast majority of ordinary citizens and this new recycling tax will ensure that ordinary families will continue to struggle for as long as they remain in government,” he concluded.