Controversial service for countryside Fifers

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Liberal Democrat councillors have questioned the way in which the introduction of the recycling service in Fife’s rural areas has been handled.

Before rolling out the three-bin system, the Council assessed access roads to rural properties and where they were judged to be unsuitable for the bin lorries, householders were informed they would need to take the bins to the road-end.

Of the 5,400 residences offered the new rural collection service , 460 householders appealed and 176 had the decision reversed.

Liberal Democrat councillor Donald Macgregor commented: “When nearly four out of every 10 appeals against change are upheld, it begs the question how the service got it so wrong?

“Surely it would have been better to have taken more care with the initial assessment of the suitability of roads, choice of vehicle etc and come up with a more appropriate scheme which would have saved everybody’s time, energy and worry.”

Cllr Elizabeth Riches said that for those whose appeal had not been upheld, the Council had made arrangements to visit and empty landfill bins fortnightly and they could still recycle plastic and tins at other recycling facilities, such as at supermarkets.

Cllr Pat Callaghan, executive spokesperson for Transportation & Environment, said all residents received a thorough assessment, and decisions made based on that information and advice from independent consultants.

He added: “The appeals process allowed residents the opportunity to feedback if they felt the risk assessments were inaccurate and to let us know if improvements had been made since the original assessments were carried out.”