Tendring residents could have to pay for replacement recycling bins and food caddies from April next year in a move to prevent people abusing the system.
Currently Tendring District Council (TDC) replace the containers free of charge but – faced with rising costs and reports of them being used for household storage – a small charge is being considered.
A set of recycling containers will still be provided free of charge to new homes, while those which become damaged by refuse collectors will also be replaced at no cost.
“There are many anecdotal reports from staff and councillors about mis-use of recycling containers, and therefore we hope this small charge will encourage people to use them for their intended purpose and cover the costs to tax-payers,” said the council’s cabinet member for the environment, Michael Talbot.
He added: “We appreciate everyone’s efforts to recycling in Tendring, which has gone up significantly since that change in 2019, but with the increase in cost of buying recycling containers there is a limit to what we can provide.”
Cllr Talbot also pointed out that residents don’t have to use an ‘official’ box – anything similar without wheels will do.
The council is also proposing to increase the fee of its garden waste recycling scheme, which has cost £50 per year, plus a £25 one-off charge for the cost of the brown bin, since the scheme was introduced in 2014.
If the proposals are implemented as part of an annual review of council fees and charges, the price will rise to £55 per year, and the one-off charge to £35.