Fewer bin collections a cut to public service not what RCT Council said a few years back

Fewer bin collections a cut to public service not what RCT Council said a few years back

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council have imposed a three-week Black Bag collection package on the residents of RCT with many residents opposed to the changes in the assessment carried out by the council. Well it was going to happen irrespective of whatever the residents put on the consultation with the excuse given by the council, making a saving of vital funding of £800,000 in running costs and significantly reducing its annual carbon footprint.

The Council in its consultation said it is proposing to change the frequency of black bag/wheelie bin waste collections from 2 weeks to 3 weeks (saving £800,000 per year). Do you agree with the proposal? 46.1 % said yes and 53.9 said no there were 4091 respondents, out of a population in RCT of 237,700 in 2021.

With the majority that RCT Labour has who run the council with no opposition it can and does what it wants when it wants to, just a few years back the RCT Labour-run Council Guaranteed waste collections

Weekly Black Bag Collections

Unlike opposition-controlled Councils, a Labour-controlled RCT will commit to continue weekly black bag collections alongside its recycling measures.

The council also said:

  • Zero Charges for Bulky Collections, If re-elected Labour will continue its policy of maintaining zero charges for bulky collections.
  • ‘Maintain support for clean & tidy neighbourhoods’, RCTC said, Our ‘Street Blitz’ approach to ensuring our neighbourhoods are clean, green and tidy will be protected and will receive additional support and investment under Labour-controlled Council.

Because of the council cuts in public services we now have local councillors asking the public to litter pick neighbourhoods, is it not the job of your local councillor to lobby the council to keep their ward clean and tidy not expect the residents to do the job, litter picking undertaking is fully funded by the sizeable council tax we pay.

AberdareOnline has asked the Director of Frontline Services questions about black bins left out on the pavement as many residents in Cynon Valley have received letters from the council to remove bins off the pavement.

Q1 I thank you for your reply on January 10, I must bring your attention to your original 2 letters received with reference to Environmental Protection Act 1990 Section 46 the legislation you quote is set out quite clearly but you as a council are not following the legislation in its entirety you are cherry-picking to suit your own agenda. How can you discriminate against residents because they live in a narrow street? You are ignoring Section 46 for the rest of Rhondda Cynon Taf is the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people because of where they reside.

AberdareOnline received this from the council “Section S46(4)(e) of the Act states that “the authority may, by the notice under that subsection, make provision with respect to….. the placing of the receptacles for that purpose[of emptying them] on highways.”  The word “may” in this part of the Act is key as doesn’t make it a statutory duty for every property.”

Q2 You say since October you have sent 633 such letters to residents, this goes to show cherry-picking to suit your own agenda, Section 46 not applying all RCT residents as equals as they all pay council tax and the problem with bins on the pavement is throughout Cynon Valley and recycling bags out for days before collection day it all comes under Environmental Protection Act 1990 Section 46 but you are ignoring all this why? 

Since October we have now issued 261 s46 Notices of which 11 residents failed to comply and have received a Fixed Penalty Notice for not complying with the Notice.

Q3 Households disposing of ash are allowed extra black bags please explain with 3-week collections how many extra black bags will be allowed for residents. Residents with small wheelie bins will be allowed an extra bag for ash. As you say “A maximum of 3 black bags per household, (for those properties with existing black bag waste collections).”

The Council appreciates that whilst most streams of waste can be recycled, there are still some items that cannot, such as cat litter and coal ash.  Where households need to dispose of volumes of non-recyclable waste and this is taking up space/weight in the black bag, the Council can allow an additional black bag allowance.  This requires householders to complete a form to explain why an additional allowance is needed and to confirm that recycling including food recycling is being done.

The council said, “If bins are left on the highway, we will not prosecute but simply remove the wheelie bin (which continues to be Council property).”

Q4 What if the resident has purchased his or her own wheelie bin, will you still remove it? Or would that be classed as theft? You say you will not prosecute the offence of failing to comply with a S46 so you would be aware the offence has been decriminalised.

The purchasing of wheelie bins is discouraged as bins have to meet a strict standard to ensure that they are safe to be lifted by the bin lift mechanism; bins not supplied by the Authority are at a higher risk of breaking and causing injury to staff or the public.  If, however, a bin is owned by a resident then we would treat it the same way as a black bag or other waste and serve the resident with an s46 notice to remove. If you re-read the response you will note that while I say that we will “not prosecute but simply remove the wheelie bin”, I go on to state that “if they breach the Notice they will receive a Fixed Penalty Notice……..  Non payment of FPN’s will be passed to the Courts”. 

You also mention that I “would be aware the offence has been decriminalised”; I am, in fact, aware that under the Deregulation Act 2015, the offence has been de-criminalised in England but that Section 46  as a criminal offence “will remain in relation to Wales and Scotland”

AberdareOnline requested the form you have to fill in for an extra black bag go to the link below.

Rhondda Cynon Taff Additional Black Bag Request – Screening Application


Our council tax goes up year on year and the cut to public services matches the tax raises, this is the excuse given again for a cut in black bag collections. The council says, “Such savings could then be diverted to safeguard other key Council services such as social care or education.”

They don’t say they will save, just such savings could save, is it just more lies as we have had in the past? The then leader of the council said, I am 100% committed to the council and maintaining and improving the services we provide wherever possible, a change in leadership and more cuts it was the 4th of June 2018 the start of cuts in waste services. How long before black bag collections go up to 4 weeks before being collected?

With nearly £208 million in its bank account in 2020/21, Rhondda Cynon Taf had more useable reserves than five Welsh councils combined.

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Team @ AberdareOnline

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