By Local Democracy Reporter Ciaran Duggan
District and borough councils, including Thanet, could receive “incentive” payments to drive up recycling rates.
A £6.5million package has been offered by Kent County Council (KCC) to encourage the recycling of more black bin bag waste.
About 2 million tones of household rubbish was collected by Kent’s 12 district and borough councils between October 2019 and September 2020.
But less than a quarter of the waste, around 482,000 tonnes in total, had been sent to the county’s 18 recycling centres, which are managed by KCC and include Canterbury’s Vauxhall Road and Manston Road in Margate.
County Hall chiefs hope the payments will “incentivise” local waste collection authorities to achieve better recyclable targets. A final decision will be made by KCC’s environment boss, Cllr Susan Carey (Con), after January 13.
At least five contracts have already been agreed with Dover, Folkestone and Hythe, Gravesham, Tonbridge and Malling and Tunbridge Wells.
A Thanet council spokesperson said: “We are committed to maximising recycling volumes and reducing the volume of black bin bag household waste.”
Meanwhile, KCC’s Conservative administration has said more recycling will “enhance” the natural environment for the county’s 1.8million residents and reduce harmful air pollution.
This comes two months after Dartford and Sevenoaks district and borough councils were criticised for their “poor” recycling rates.
At the time KCC environment chief, Cllr Carey, said the councils were “very wedded” to their weekly collections, with Dartford recycling just 21% of its waste from last June to September.
However, Dartford council’s leader Cllr Jeremy Kite (Con) said his residents had “rejected” a switch to less frequent bin collections during a public vote in 2017.
Meanwhile, Sevenoaks council accepted there was “room for improvement” with regards to recycling glass and other material at its 30 smaller sites.