Tuesday, 14 February 2012
Department of Environment, Community and Local Government
Question 461: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if it is possible for a householder in an area in which waste collection services are provided by a private company and not by the local authority to contract any waste service provider to collect their bins; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8250/12]
Question 472: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he is bringing in new legislation as outlined under the programme for Government 2011 to allow for competitive tendering for local waste collection services where the tenderer will bid to provide services in an entire local authority area; the timeline for introducing this legislation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8500/12]
I propose to take Questions Nos. 461 and 472 together.
Currently, very few local authorities directly provide household waste collection services. In many areas, a number of private sector waste collectors offer competing services to householders, subject to compliance with all applicable environmental and other relevant legislation. Householders in such areas are free to choose from among the competing service providers.
The Programme for Government contains a commitment to introduce competitive tendering for household waste collection, under which service providers would bid to provide waste collection services in a given area, for a given period of time and to a guaranteed level of service. A public consultation designed to inform the policy development process concluded in September 2011. A large number of responses were received from a broad spectrum of interests. As one might expect, a consensus is not apparent and, on almost all of the relevant issues, a considerable breadth of opinion was expressed. All of the responses received, in addition to a summary document, are available on my Department’s website, www.environ.ie.
My Department is currently undertaking a regulatory impact analysis to examine the costs, benefits and other impacts of options for change, and to inform how best to regulate the household waste collection market. My overall policy objective is to improve the functioning of waste management in this country. I expect to be in a position to submit final proposals in relation to household waste collection to Government by Easter this year.