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Green waste service for Mitchell Shire?

The success of a trial will see the idea go to the budget process.

CHALPAT SONTI May 7, 2014 3:06am

It seems only a matter of time before a kerbside green waste and organics collection service is set up in Mitchell Shire.

Councillors voted last week to send the proposal for consideration during the upcoming budget process — if successful it would be implemented in the new financial year and if not it would be considered for the following year.

The proposed service, which has been designed following a trial in Wallan, would initially cover Seymour, Broadford, Kilmore and Wallan.

It would cost ratepayers about $71/year extra.

Such a service would have a set-up cost (for supply and delivery of bins to 11000 households) of about $520000, of which council could recover $161000 through a Sustainability Victoria grant.

It would have to consider whether to absorb this through its capital budget or other reserves or pass it on to users as a $33.50 one-off set-up cost.

A report prepared for councillors says such a service, which is intended to eventually roll out across the entire shire, would divert 1600tonnes from landfill each year.

The landfill was designed to close in 2030 but the report said at present rates of filling would be at capacity before then.

Reducing residential waste at the landfill would also mean a greater portion of its cost would be borne by commercial customers, thus increasing revenue.

Cr Bill Melbourne said there had been a substantial shift in public opinion about the merits of a service, with the council surveying residents in 2006 and 2013 and finding more enthusiasm in recent times — 95 per cent of trial participants supported a service.

Cr Sue Marstaeller said a green waste service made better long-term economic sense ‘‘than what we’re doing at the moment’’.

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