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From taxpayer to ratepayer

The government is to withdraw almost £6 million in annual waste disposal subsidies to local authorities and businesses.

A figure of £5.7 million will be phased out over the next six years with a claimed saving to the taxpayer of £1 million each year between 2013 and 2018.

In effect, the cost is being shifted to the ratepayer.

By the end of the period the Island’s local authorities, which are legally responsible for domestic waste collection, will be paying the full cost of disposal at the Incinerator.

Howard Caine reports (audio file attached):

Whilst making a saving for the taxpayer, the move will effectively shift responsibility for the cost onto the ratepayer.

Infrastructure Minister David Cretney says at a time of considerable pressure on budgets, the public expects Government to prioritise its spending to support front-line services.

The department says it can't direct local authorities as to how they deal with the withdrawal of the waste subsidy but if they chose to pass the cost straight through to householders, it should mean a rates increase of around £11 annually for six years for a typical three-bedroom terraced house.

That's an average increase of around £22 per household per year.

Local authorities have had the cost of waste disposal subsidised since the Energy from Waste facility opened in 2004.

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