Millions of ratepayers are being hit with huge rubbish bin collection charges, up by more than 20 per cent in some regions, in a move that has residents fired up.
Almost 60 per cent of councils in the state of Victoria have increased their waste charges by five percent from July 1, and one in four by 10 per cent, according to a Herald Sun analysis.
On top of lifting rubbish rates which already cost residents hundreds a year, some councils are reportedly increasing their waste service levy — a separate service not included in general council rates, which can't be increased by more than 3.5 per cent annually.
“Ratepayers are struggling as it is with the cost of living at the moment, and our position is that we want to see these rubbish charges capped,” Council Watch president Kelvin Granger told the Herald Sun.
“We want to see the State government step in and do that, like they did for general council rates.”
Mornington Peninsula Shire has increased its waste levy by a whopping 22.85 per cent in May, according to the publication. Mr Granger expects the waste service levy will likely be rolled out across the whole state at some point.
What is behind the increased rubbish charges?
Earlier this year, residents protested the move in the The City of Yarra, where it still ended up being rolled out. The waste service levy was estimated to cost those residents an extra $115 per year.
Councils told The Herald Sun the increased charges are "difficult but necessary". They say the state government's move to double the state landfill levy in 2020 is behind the move. Victorian Waste Management Association Chief Executive Peter Anderson said the state is struggling to "keep up" with "the waste that’s being produced".
“Until we figure out a way to deal with waste more seriously it’s something we are going to have to continue paying for," he told the Herald Sun.
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