The Conservatives have found out that not a single council has
volunteered for Labour’s controversial bin tax pilot scheme. Ministers have been pushing for the introduction of bin taxes based on frequency or on weight.
The Labour-dominated Communities & Local Government Select Committee had said in February that it was hard to see why any council would want to "set up a complicated charging scheme that earns it no money and risks widespread public disapproval", so it shouldn’t be a surprise.
Brown had reportedly wanted to dump the unpopular policy last autumn, it would have been better for him if he’d been decisive on it. Add this to the promotion of fortnightly collections and bin inspectors/fines and you don’t get a very popular approach to household waste. Shadow Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles has commented on this latest development:
"This should sound the death knell for bin taxes and bin bureaucracy. However I fear that despite widespread public opposition, bin taxes are still very much alive and kicking as Ministers press ahead with a policy they hope will fill the empty Government coffers.
To add insult to injury Joan Ruddock has made the astonishing admission that bin taxes will push up the cost of living for hard pressed families battling with the credit crunch. Then she admits no one wants them. Will Labour have to roll out more bin tax bribes to persuade councils to implement them?
It is beyond doubt that the only thing bin taxes will do is fuel a surge in fly-tipping and increase backyard burning as people try to dodge paying another of Gordon Brown’s stealth tax."