New refuse collection timetables being delivered to homes

…. as Council struggles to fill bin lorry vacancies, new apprenticeship scheme announced

Residents should receive a personalised refuse collection timetable through their letterboxes during the next few days. It covers the next 12 months and explains when to expect collections over the busy Christmas period.

It makes no reference to the One Planet App which was discontinued last week following concerns about hacking. Consequently there is no readily available mobile link which provides up to date information for those on the move.

Green bin emptying has now stopped and will recommence in April

Unfortunately the leaflet, while explaining what can be recycled at the kerbside, fails to explain how to safely dispose of other items such as hard plastics.

Signage at the recycling centres such as Hazel Court is also in need of refreshing.

There is some information on the Councils web site click here

Meanwhile the Council is trying to fill some long term vacancies in its refuse management teams. In recent weeks there have been several occasions when recycling has not been collected. Details are usually posted on their Facebook page (click) each day.

The Council has issued a statement saying,

“Earlier this year, City of York Council made a number of changes to waste services to address some of the challenges it’s faced including a national shortage of HGV drivers, sickness and poor weather.

Whilst the pressures have been on prioritising household waste and box recycling services, as statutory services mandated by public health acts. The consequence of this is that garden waste collections have been the most affected.

In addition to training loaders as LGV/HGV drivers from within the waste services team, a successful recruitment day was also held in September, with an accelerated application process.

In addition this, the council is making further improvements in the coming months to its IT systems, so that drivers can be guided during the rounds, allowing them to flag issues but also accurately record uncompleted rounds. Staff will also be used as drivers and loaders so that if there is a shortage of either, the council can use existing staff to help.

There is also an opportunity to replace the council fleet over the next few years. The majority of the current vehicles are due to be paid for at the end of this financial year and work has started to specify the fleet.  New vehicles are expected to arrive in 2020.

More can be done though and on top of the above, a report will be taken an Executive Member decision session next month, recommending a new driver apprentice programme.

If approved, the council will develop a driver apprentice programme within the waste team to train drivers as early as next year. This would enable staff to be trained and as a result retained by the council”.

Cllr Andrew Waller, Executive Member for Environmental Services, said: “I’d like to thank staff for working extra days to make up for missed collections. We’ve already made a lot of changes to the service but we know more can be done to improve the service’s reliability. So, it’s important that we learn from the challenges the service has faced and the decisions made, so that we can give our front-line crews the chance to provide the best service possible to our residents.”

The decision session meeting takes place on Monday 3 December from 5.30pm and is open to members of the public or is available to watch live online from: www.york.gov.uk/webcasts

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