Local Authorities face tough challenge in maintaining services

Local Authorities are facing a tough challenge in maintaining essential public services, such as waste collection and disposal, in the face of severe funding cuts.

New analysis by the Local Government Association (LGA) has revealed that the cuts, announced in Chancellor George Osborne’s broad framework for public spending back in July, may lead to the loss of up to 140,000 Local Authority jobs over the next year. 

This revised estimate- 40 per cent higher than originally expected–  is due to the Government’s decision to ‘front load’ a large proportion of the cuts into the first year rather than allowing Local Authorities to spread them over the four years of the Spending Review, meaning Local Authorities will have to trim their budgets by an average of 11 per cent in 2011/12.

Some of the jobs to go will include posts in waste and recycling, according to the LGA.

Clive Harris, waste policy advisor for the LGA, said: “Waste and recycling is an important frontline service but councils are under pressure across the board. Decisions will have to be taken locally on where to make the cuts.”

Commercial recycler and social welfare charity, Recycling Lives, is perfectly placed to help authorities maintain an essential service while helping to tackle worklessness in their areas and also help to improve the environment and keep the community clean, through the innovative BulkyWaste Service.

BulkyWaste allows householders nationwide to arrange collection of unwanted bulky items through a simple, convenient online process. BulkyWaste aims to reuse or recycle at least 60 per cent of items collected.

Working alongside Local Authorities, who can use the BulkyWaste online system to enhance or replace their own, BulkyWaste reduces the amount of waste sent to landfill and therefore reduces Landfill Tax costs and increases the authorities’ allowance on the Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme (LATS).

A more efficient system also helps to reduce service costs through improved geographic routing and collection scheduling.

Local Authorities can also engage Collection Partners, charities and social enterprises who provide the frontline service and through this offer employment opportunities to the long-term unemployed, such as the Recycling Lives Residents in Preston, reducing benefit claims and removing entirely the cost to the authority for providing the collection service.

BulkyWaste also helps to reduce fly tipping and its associated costs by providing a convenient and affordable alternative to residents, helping to keep the community clean.