Bulky waste trial discount trial to continue for rest of the year in Northampton

The discount is aiming to help reduce fly-tipping in Northampton
The discount is aiming to help reduce fly-tipping in Northampton

Northampton residents will continue to get a £10 discount on removing bulky waste after a trial period was extended for the rest of the year.

The cost of the bulky waste collection service was reduced from £25 to £15 for a trial period from April. And the borough council trial has proved popular enough for the trial period to be extended until the end of the 2019/20 financial year.

Although the scheme’s impact on the levels of fly-tipping is yet to be fully formulated, the initial thoughts are that it is having a positive influence.

Cabinet member for the environment, Councillor Mike Hallam, told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “It was originally a three-month trial, but we have agreed with Kingdom to do this for another 12 months.

“The additional cost associated with the reduction in charge is being funded through the income from successful enforcement. So the important thing is that people that aren’t behaving are funding reductions for the people that are behaving.”

External contractors Kingdom carry out litter enforcement in the town, dishing out fines to people caught dropping rubbish. Councillor Hallam said the contractors had effectively ‘agreed to sponsor’ the bulky waste collection discount. The trial period has led to a 50 per cent increase in the availability of booking slots for such collections.

Back in January, prior to the trial starting, it was revealed that NBC’s bulky waste service was the dearest in the county. But Councillor Hallam had said that the authority was only able to budge on the costs now because it had been ‘locked in to the previous charge’ for the last seven years.

The borough council had set aside £2,500 for the April to June period in its 2019/20 budget, with that sum also coming from income from fixed penalty notices that had been issued by wardens and third-party enforcement officers.