HOUSEHOLDERS in York could be charged for having their garden clippings and other green waste collected.
At the moment, the city council provides a single free garden waste collection every fortnight - only charging households if they want to put out extra green bins.
But that could change as the authority struggles to plug gaps in its budget.
It is setting up a task group to look into the possibility of charging for “discretionary waste” - which includes green bins and bulky rubbish.
Schools and charities could also be charged for having rubbish collected.
The authority should think again.
We understand the pressure on council budgets. And we accept that, per head, York’s council tax is low compared to many local authorities.
Nevertheless, through that council tax, we already all pay for council services such as rubbish collection. There are no proposals to charge for black bin collections - the council has a legal duty to provide those free. But even just charging to collect garden cuttings and other discretionary waste would be seen by many as being asked to pay twice.
Even worse, it may encourage fly-tipping - or even lead some householders to put their garden waste into black bins, so it would end up in landfill.
Environmentally, it would be a big step backwards.