The proposal of kerbside waste services for the Western Bay of Plenty has received strong support from elected members today.
Western Bay of Plenty District Council elected members met to discuss the 2019/20 Long Term Annual Plan, which included the proposal of pursuing a kerbside waste removal service.
Elected members voted in favour of allowing the council to investigate implementing a service that would collect all waste and recycling from roadsides throughout the district. Cr Mike Lally was the only councillor to oppose the decision, suggesting people would not want to change their behaviour.
Councillors were told the procurement process would likely take about a year before they could be presented with a tangible result in July 2020. This was expected to cost $100,000 and would be ultimately available to about 80 per cent of the district. In years to come the service was forecast to cost about $4 million per year.
Of 552 submissions received, 64 per cent voted in favour of the proposal compared with other reduced service options.
Cr Mike Williams said an overwhelming number of people "want us to do far more in this area".
"I believe this is the line we should be going down. We have a duty in reducing our waste going to landfill. We've sat on the fence for a long time in the past but now we're taking a huge step forward, which I'm pleased about. Younger people are calling for this to happen."
Cr Margaret Murray-Benge agreed saying: "People are ready for change".
Cr Don Thwaites said it came down to money "but in my view, it's the right thing to do".
Chairman John Scrimgeour said the reality was the council had to encourage people to abide by the rules.
Councillors also voted in favour of introducing a rural waste drop-off points for those communities unable to access the kerbside collections. The council proposed using shipping containers, which would cost affected households $16 per property.
The council voted to explore suitable locations but Cr Williams was quick to suggest Pukehina.
"The Pukehina community have said this is what hey want, so let's give it to them."
In 387 submissions, 75 per cent of respondents favoured this shipping container drop-off point option.