The cost of rubbish disposal for those living outside kerbside waste collection areas is hitting low-income households hard, a Corangamite Shire councillor says.
Speaking at the council’s budget meeting this week, Cr Helen Durant said the annual cost for many people was “quite significant”.
Cr Durant was responding to a submission to the council’s draft budget calling for a cut to the cost of waste disposal.
“These small bags of non-recyclable waste… need to be taken to landfill or the transfer station on a regular basis. This is an annual cost that can be quite significant for someone who is on a very low income or, as the submitter stated, for someone who is living in poverty,” she said.
Cr Durant said the affordability issue was especially hard for “single, elderly or disabled residents who live on low fixed incomes, who are renting and who live outside of the kerbside collection area”.
Cr Durant said she was not advocating for a change to the 2018-19 budget, which was adopted on Tuesday, but called for work to be done to make it more affordable in future years.
“I would like to see some work done on quantifying this issue and identifying workable options that can be put into place for the 2019-20 budget,” she said.
At the same time, ratepayers within the kerbside collection areas are facing a steep rise in garbage charges, attributed to the ongoing recycling crisis.
Charges in Corangamite Shire are increasing by more than 21 per cent, or a hike of about $63 per property.
In its report to council on the draft budget, officers stated the annual cost of disposing of waste and recycling at transfer stations ($348) and the kerbside collection charge ($360) were now almost on par.