The cost of our waste services by shire

It seems size really does matter when it comes to rubbish … 

Dennis Savage from Urunga recently drew to our attention to the fact that Bellingen Shire residents on average pay more for their rubbish collection service than those to the north in Coffs Harbour or to the south in Nambucca Shire.

He wrote to us saying:

“Three Councils participate in the Coffs Coast Waste Services partnership. The waste charges for 2018/2019 levied by each of those Councils are:

Bellingen           $679

Coffs Harbour  $655

Nambucca        $543

He questioned why the prices for the same service differed so vastly?

Michelle McFadyen, Bellingen Council’s Deputy General Manager Corporate and Community, said that economies of scale were a significant part of the rates equation (both in terms of general rates and service charges). 

“Bellingen Shire has the smallest population of the three councils mentioned, with for example, Nambucca Shire having a population around 30 per cent higher than Bellingen.

“It also has only one waste facility to manage and maintain, as opposed to Bellingen which manages and maintains three facilities (Raleigh, Dorrigo and Bellingen).

Operating three facilities is clearly more costly than operating one facility.

Michelle McFadyen

“In addition, Bellingen Shire Council offers our residents the clothing bags collection and a voucher/ bulky goods system, which is different to our neighbouring councils.

“We offer one pick up and one voucher for those on the domestic service, as well a voucher system for all rural residents paying the waste access charge.”  

Nambucca Shire Council offers a bulky goods pickup once a year for those who receive a kerbside garbage service.

For those who don’t receive a kerbside collection service there is a voucher for disposal at the waste depot.

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