THE BIG DEBATE: Are you ready for the new green waste collections?

JPCT 20-11-12 S12460521X Horsham Brown green waste recycle bin -photo by Steve Cobb
JPCT 20-11-12 S12460521X Horsham Brown green waste recycle bin -photo by Steve Cobb

People have just until May 18 to sign up to get permanent green waste collections, but the County Times has found people are still unaware of the scheme.

In December, the Horsham District Council, who manages waste collections, decided it could no longer afford to fund the garden waste service and so took the controversial decision to charge to the collections as many other councils do.

People wanting to continue having the brown lidded bin emptied have to have paid the £29 annual charge and received a sticker to display on their bin to show collectors they have registered.

Although they can sign up after May 18, they will still pay the £29 for the remainder of 2013/14 financial year and will find they will miss out on collections from June 1.

After that date and bins without the sticker will not be emptied and residents will have to either compost their waste or take it to the household recycling sites in Hop Oast or Billingshurst.

But the County Times is hearing that people are waiting weeks for their sticker and some have not even heard about it until a reporter brought up the subject.

HDC maintains it has publicised it well in its Horsham District News magazine, in letters to residents and acknowledged it has been well covered by the County Times.

In a statement released today (Thursday May 9) a spokesman said: “We’re sorry for any frustration caused by the time it takes to process Direct Debit payments or problems people have when signing up. Over 18,000 people have already signed up for the garden waste service, the Council has issued 13,500 stickers so far and will issue a further 3,500 in the next week.

“It usually takes about four weeks to issue a sticker because the Direct Debit rules require a three week delay between receiving the mandate and taking a payment, however we are speeding this up to two weeks to assist people who have not yet signed up.

“Residents can still sign up to the service at any time but must do so before May 18 to ensure they receive their sticker before we stop the service for bins that do not have a valid sticker displayed on June 1.

“Anyone who has waited more than four weeks can contact the Council by calling 01403 739459 and we will resolve the problem as quickly as possible.

“For further information and to sign up to the garden waste household collection scheme, visit www.horsham.gov.uk”

What do you think? Do you know people who are unaware of the upcoming change, have you received your sticker?

Leave your comments below and if you are viewing this on a desktop site, fill in the poll to the right.

If you’re willing to tell your story for others to hear, contact reporter Anna Coe on 01403 751206 or email anna.coe@jpress.co.uk