R60 fee on the cards

2018-06-18 17:42

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Msunduzi's ratepayers could soon be forced to pay the City a once-off amount of R60 owed on the controversial recycling charge even though many are not getting the service.

The monthly recycling tariff of R9,78 was approved by council for implementation in July 2017 but it only started reflecting on the utility bills earlier this year. It is a separate charge from the domestic refuse tariff.

According to sources at the City Hall, the R60, which is scheduled to appear in this month’s bills, is owed to the City for the period from July 2017 to January.

“Since this tariff was implemented, there has been no service in terms of recycling from the municipality throughout the city,” said DA councillor Ross Strachan.

Msunduzi’s 2015 kerbside “orange bag” recycling initiative collapsed after the majority of the waste collectors pulled out of the programme. Only four of the 20 collectors are still in operation in six wards. Others fell by the wayside because there was no contribution from the municipality. The reasons for most failures were due to the high costs of fuel and lack of designated sites for collectables.

“Residents of this city are tired of the lack of service, management and control in this municipality, residents are paying for a service not rendered and therefore this is highly irregular, irresponsible and against the law,” said Strachan.

He said the DA believe that recycling is a global priority and should be supported by the City, as it has the potential to create employment and have a positive effect on the environment.

“We have been requesting recycling awareness campaigns to be rolled out throughout the city in support of the initiative. We have invited officials to attend public meetings regarding recycling, which they’ve failed to attend,” said Strachan.

The DA has proposed that the recycling tariff be rescinded with immediate effect until the kerbside programme is fully functional and rolled out throughout the City.

Msunduzi spokesperson Thobeka Mafumbatha said funds collected through the tariff will be used to establish recycling initiatives as well as the waste minimisation and diversion centre.

“Recycling is beneficial to the environment, enhances clean and healthy areas for all to live, work, trade and play in. The preservation of the environment is everyone’s responsibility and is the most precious legacy we can leave for our future generations,” she said.

Mafumbatha did not respond to The Witness’ questions about the lawfulness of charging ratepayers for a service they are not getting.

Read more on:    msunduzi municipality

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