Agenda item

Waste Management Services - Update on the Refuse Service Review and National Waste Strategy implications for Leeds

To receive the report of the Deputy Chief Officer, Communities and Environment, which provides the Community Committee with an update on the progress with the review of the Refuse Service in Leeds and provides a brief update on the development of a new National Resources and Waste Strategy and how that relates to Leeds.

(Report attached)



The report of the Deputy Chief Officer, Waste Management, provided the Community Committee with an update on the progress with the review of the Refuse Service in Leeds and provided a brief update on the development of a new National Resources and Waste Strategy and how that relates to Leeds.


The following documents were appended to the report:


-  Review Objectives

-  Key Principles/Actions developed and agreed

-  Waste Strategy for Leeds 2019-21

-  Christmas bin collections 22 December - 5 January


John Woolmer, Deputy Chief Officer, Waste Management, was in attendance and highlighted to Members the following key points:

·  Appendix A of the submitted report listed the objectives of the service. The service are working alongside the unions to provide a better service;

·  The current routes have been used for 9 years and need to change to adapt with the demography of the community changing;

·  A report is due to be taken to the January 2020, Executive Board on the subject of missed bins in relation to access routes;

·  The service are due to have 45 new vehicles by the end of December 2019;

·  Garden routes have also been redesigned and these will be relaunched in March 2020;

·  The new role of Chargehand was provided to Members and the use of in cab technology;

·  Routes have been redesigned to link with the Community Committee areas and include recycling facilities;

·  The Government are due to publish the Waste Strategy in December 2019. Highlighted within the strategy will be the recycling of glass, food and plastics. There is a social media campaign to provide clarity on what can be put into green bins;

·  End of day reports will be more detailed and are monitored as a back office process;

·  Ideas on how we engage within the communities to change behaviours and support activist groups;

·  The service needs to have better links to the Community Committees and the Cleaner Neighbourhood Teams to address issues at a local level whilst still delivering a city-wide service.


Members discussed a number of matters including:

·  Raising awareness in regard to recycling plastics. Members identified scope for further education surrounding items that can be recycled and queried the measures in place for language barriers. The Deputy Chief Officer informed Members that the appended document on Christmas bin collections would be mailed to each household in Leeds, and that the use of social media was increasingly being used to promote guidance.

·  Black and green bin re-routes. Members heard that bin collection days would be changed as per the change of the routes across the city; it was noted that Members would be consulted on this prior to this information being released and it was expected that this would take place in June 2020. 

·  Recycling centres. Members queried the measurements in place, to encourage residents and the options available. Members heard there was a possibility to incorporate more recycling banks into the community, and that these can be provided upon request of Members providing a suitable location; these could not be policed.

·  Parking offences. A Member raised concern in regard to cars blocking access for the bin wagons, and questioned the options available to mitigate the issue. In responding, it was confirmed that the police are able to issue fines as a short-term solution, and going forward, traffic regulation orders can be actioned for areas causing repeat issues.

·  Staffing structure. Members raised concern that they had been having problems when getting in contact with the refuse team. Members heard that as part of the service restructure, Team Leaders will be recruited.

·  Sidewalk obstructions. Members were informed that as part of the staff appraisal process, staff receive safety instructions on how to leave the bin. Once the Team Leaders are in place, they will be able to undertake quality assurance.



a)  To note the contents of the report, and the discussions during the meeting

b)  To note the actions outlined in the minutes as per the discussions


(During consideration of this report, Councillor Goddard arrived at the meeting at 18:35. As such, it was noted that the meeting had become quorate in line with the Council Procedure Rules 28.3, and therefore the Committee was able to take formal decisions from that point in the meeting)


Supporting documents: