Lack of consultation and poor communication with residents have been criticised with regard to next year’s introduction of the new 123+ waste collections across Stratford and Warwick districts.
The decision means that, from next August, food waste will be collected each week, recycling every fortnight and the grey bins for other refuse every three weeks. The chargeable garden waste service will continue every two weeks.
But at the overview and scrutiny meeting of Stratford District Council on Wednesday (October 27) Cllr Kate Rolfe (Lib Dem, Tiddington) asked why there had been no consultation with those who will be using the service.
She said: “I have been approached by lots of residents about this - I don’t remember it going to any consultation at all.
Cllr Ian Shenton (Con, Wootton Wawan), the council’s portfolio holder for climate change, said the matter had been discussed at a council meeting but the Liberal Democrat group abstained.
Cllr Rolfe added: “It looks like the system has been agreed amongst this council of which we abstained but nobody was consulted on it. People are really concerned - and so am I.”
Cllr Shenton outlined some of the communications planned before the introduction of the service.
He said: “Over the coming months there will be increased messaging but they are not planned to start until later in the year or early next year because if you start too soon then people will forget those messages.
“There is an FAQ page on the council website which anyone can turn to which gives some brief details on how the system will work.”
But there was a warning to members of the committee from Cllr David Curtis (Lib Dem, Shottery) who said: “We do need to be very careful - a vote at council, communications, messaging, press releases and FAQs are not consultation.
“I would like this committee to look at consultation processes within the council. We need to be able, as far as possible, to take our residents with us in making difficult decisions - good relationships between the council and its residents will be critical and a very important part of that is ensuring that our consultations really are robust and fit for purpose.”