Struggling Victorian councils facing spiralling waste collection costs should be helped by the Andrews Government.
Member for Western Victoria, Simon Ramsay, today told the State Parliament that the Premier is holding onto half a billion dollars of land fill levies.
“The Warrnambool City Council advises me that they are facing a potential liability of $250,000 to the financial year and $650,000 for a full year due to China restricting the importation of recyclable commodities from Australia”, he said.
The council contracts Wheelie Waste to do kerbside waste collection who then provides it to Visy for $70 tonne.
“With Visy now unable to on-sell, the cost has risen to $130 tonne. It will now become either landfill or local councils are going to have to pick up the increased costs. Either way, ratepayers will be hit”.
Mr Ramsay has asked the Environment Minister, Lily D’Ambrosio, for help.
“Would the Minister consider using the half billion in land fill levies held by Treasury to compensate Councils having to absorb the cost recovery of recycle waste collection until a viable alternative is found?”
Mr Ramsay said regional and country councils are already feeling discarded by the Andrews Government.
He said road funding has been cut, rates capped and the recycling woe adds more financial pain.
“This Government doesn’t get what it takes to exist in country areas. It has no grasp on regional reality and its attitude is offensive.
“Take for example the Roads Minister, Luke Donnellan, who recently told the Corangamite Mayor Jo Beard that his miserly roads funding offer to the council was “better than a kick in the d**k”.
“If this attitude reflects the Government’s state of mind, then country and regional councils are right to feel neglected – and unlikely to get the financial support they need right now on recycling”.