herald

Friday 15 December 2017

Anger over debt firm seeking a €47 bin bill

A DEBT-COLLECTION agency hired by Dublin City Council is demanding bin charges arrears for sums as low as €47.

One woman who was contacted by Pay Away Debt Management Solutions said she was left frightened after receiving a letter seeking payment for council bin charges.

The woman said she believed she was never in arrears to either the city council or to the Greyhound bin company for bin services.

"I really got a fright when I got a letter from a debt collection company for a council bill I had no idea that I owed," said the Glasnevin area resident.

"I don't have an issue paying it, but I strongly object to being contacted in this way. My own elderly mother would have fainted to get such a letter," she said.

The woman said she always paid her council bin charges on time. And when Greyhound took over the bins service, she continued to pay promptly.

The letter from Pay Away Debt Management Solutions declared it represented Dublin City Council in demanding €47.

It declared that "failure" to contact the company "may result in escalation of matters and unnecessary additional costs".

Overdue

The bill related to 2011 and to January 2012 but there was no mention of any overdue bin lifts.

It referred to a standing charge of €25 and "big bin [fee] of €18" and "brown bin €4".

The letter stated: "We have been instructed to contact you concerning an amount outstanding for refuse collection services previously rendered

"It is always our aim to try and assist where possible in resolving these matters but your co-operation is also required in this regard."

It requested her to contact the debt collection service "without delay".

A spokeswoman for the debt collection service told the Herald the letter related to "a bill issued in May 2012 during the time of the takeover" of the domestic waste collection business by Greyhound Recycling from Dublin City Council.

She stated: "All methods for collecting the outstanding amounts (€7.2m) have been agreed with Dublin City Council and Greyhound Recycling."

aokeeffe@hnews.ie

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