herald

Saturday 18 August 2018

City council set to sell off bin service over f10m losses

DUBLIN City Council can no longer afford to carry out its bin collection service, internal documents reveal.

The privatisation of the city's bin service is now firmly on the cards after an independent report found that the financial losses incurred by the council last year were "considerable and unsustainable".

The report, obtained by the Herald, claims that the council is in an "almost impossible position" and that unless it imposes a "very significant price increase" it can no longer afford to remain in the refuse market.

The report examined the possibility of the council acting as a "stand-alone separate company" as well as the establishment of a "social enterprise-type venture" associated with DCC.

However it concluded that the current climate means "significant loss making will continue should the Council remain in this (refuse) business".

It is estimated that the council made a €10m loss on the service last year.

The Herald has learned that the report is being met with strong opposition by SIPTU, which represents more than 100 bin service workers.



REluctance

And the examiners themselves commented on the "very great reluctance of the unions" to consent to the end of the service in its current form.

The council is the only local authority in the capital yet to decide to sell off its bin service.

The council said today that it is currently "in discussion with unions" over the issue but refused to comment on the individual aspects of the report.

However People Before Profit Councillor Pat Dunne told the Herald that selling off the service would "without doubt" lump extra costs on families.

"There's no doubt that struggling families are going to forced to pay potentially very large fees and I believe, with all the measures coming in, that this simply will prove unaffordable," he said.

The report was carried out by consultancy firm Ampersand -- which earlier this year reviewed the bin service at Fingal County Council, which will withdraw from the waste collection market at the end of this year.

The service is already run privately in South Dublin and Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown.

hnews@herald.ie

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