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Calls for council to scrap planned changes to York's green bin collections
CITY leaders are to face calls to scrap any plans to make York residents pay for having their green waste bins collected.
A "subscription-based service" and seasonal garden waste collections are being considered by City of York Council as it looks to save £250,000 by the end of 2013/14, but plans for a public consultation on the issue have been delayed.
The authority's Liberal Democrat group will use this week's full council meeting to demand the ruling Labour group abandons any plans for green-bin charging.
The Conservatives have also tabled a motion calling for the idea to be ruled out and for all the city's existing salt bins - almost half of which will not be automatically filled this winter due to cash shortages - to remain in place.
The Lib Dems said 1,173 people have signed a petition against charging for green waste collections, raising fears such a move would lead to a drop in recycling and rising landfill tax bills and cancel out any savings.
The group's spokesperson for environmental services, Coun Ann Reid, said: "The response from the public has been overwhelming and residents are angry this frontline service is under threat."
Coun John Galvin, who will table the Conservative motion, said: "Providing salt bins in winter and green waste removal for residents are two bare-minimum services which people expect the council to fulfil when they pay their council tax.
"To put them in jeopardy by cutting back on salt bins and proposing residents pay extra for the removal of green waste bins is a dereliction of basic council duties."
Coun David Levene, cabinet member for environmental services, said Labour was "not going to rule anything in or out" on green waste collections before a review and public consultation were completed, saying: "The cabinet will consider responses to that public consultation, and the input of all councillors, before making any decision.
"Local Conservatives continue to welcome cuts to local government, then oppose the effects of these cuts locally. We will retain full funding for core salt bins, while discretionary salt bins allocated by some ward councillors over a period will no longer be funded."
He said salt bins not automatically filled by the council will be left out so "contingency funding" can be used to stock them if winter weather is bad, adding: "This is a temporary measure pending a full public consultation on salt bin locations next year."
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