Residents in the Horsham district who have not already signed up to the new garden waste collection service have until May 18 to sign up to ensure there are no missed collections.
Unlike general waste collection, the special collection of garden waste is not a service that the district council is obliged to provide and, in the face of a huge reduction in the money it receives in Government support, it was agreed by the council in December 2012 that it can no longer afford to collect garden waste free of charge.
Anyone wishing to have their garden waste bin emptied will in future need to have signed up to the paid collection service.
There has been considerable publicity about the new service and residents now have a final opportunity - until May 18 - to sign up in time for the start of the new scheme so as not to miss a collection.
After that date, if a membership sticker showing that the annual charge of £29 has been paid is not displayed on the brown-topped bins, it will no longer be emptied.
All other councils in West Sussex already make a charge, but at £29 the new service for Horsham district residents is the lowest in the county. Customers with larger gardens can also pay £15 per year per bin to have additional bins emptied.
The leader of the council, Ray Dawe (Con, Chantry) said: “I think that most residents now understand that in the face of huge reductions in the Council’s income we have no alternative but to look at the services we can provide.
“This is not a service we have to provide and we can no longer offer it free of charge. We believe, however, that it is reasonable for the council to offer those residents who still wish to have their garden waste collected the opportunity to join a paid-for service.”
The spring 2013 issue of the council’s ‘Horsham District News’ magazine also featured the garden waste collection scheme, as part of an ongoing campaign to promote the scheme, and give more information to readers on how they can sign up.
Information on the garden waste collection scheme is also available on Horsham District Council’s website (www.horsham.gov.uk).