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Minister accused of u-turn over plans to introduce £10m waste charge from 2018

Minister accused of u-turn over plans to introduce £10m waste charge from 2018

Thursday 03 March 2016

Minister accused of u-turn over plans to introduce £10m waste charge from 2018

Thursday 03 March 2016

The Infrastructure Minister has been accused of making a u-turn now he is wasting no time pushing ahead with plans to charge £10 million per year to get rid of our waste.

Deputy Eddie Noel, who when he was up for election for TTS Minister said he wouldn't want to bring in charges for domestic waste, says he’s started investigating ways of charging for both liquid and solid waste and how those charges can be introduced here from 2018.

Speaking in the States last week he said: "We have commissioned a substantial piece of work looking at both liquid and solid waste charging mechanisms and how they can be implemented in Jersey. How they can be implemented in a fair way and also addressing to make sure that we address the concerns about the ability to pay."

He said for years Islanders have been paying for the three-quarters of waste going to the incinerator from the commercial sector and that's "simply not fair and it needs to be addressed". He said Jersey is one of the very few places in the world that still doesn't charge for waste disposal as a way of encouraging waste avoidance and recycling.

The statement drew an angry response from some States Members, with Reform Jersey's Sam Mezec accusing him of going back on his word.

He said: "Hansard is a wonderful thing. During his election for Minister for Transport and Technical Services, when he was trying to extort votes out of us so that he could do this job, he was asked a question by Deputy Le Fondré about waste disposal tax in which he said 'I believe currently that it is not possible to bring waste charges in on domestic waste due to the covenant with St. Helier so it is not in my remit to implement it even if I wanted to, which I do not, but I do believe there is a strong argument for charging commercial waste.' So could I ask him when this U-turn happened?"

Speaking in the States, Deputy Noel said: "The problem with commercial waste, it does not…at least a third of it arrives in the back of Parish dust carts. That is a fundamental issue. If we could separate it, we could charge in a different way and remove the subsidy from the taxpayer to the commercial enterprises.”

But he's still got a legal battle on his hands first. St Helier Constable Simon Crowcroft has vowed to fight a move to set aside a legal agreement from 1952 that prevents the States charging St Helier residents for the disposal of waste.

The sale of the Bellozanne site by the Parish of St Helier to the States for the old incinerator included a clause that the States could never charge St Helier residents for waste disposal.


But now, with the £10 million user-pays waste charge forming part of the plan to fill the £145 million deficit expected by 2019, the Infrastructure department wants to set that clause aside to get the charge set up.

If evenly divided between all Island households, the charge per home would be £223 per year.

It will be up to the Royal Court to give an opinion later this year on whether the covenant should be raised.


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Comments on this story express the views of the commentator only, not Bailiwick Publishing. We are unable to guarantee the accuracy of any of those comments.

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Posted by Havelock Jones on
There is already huge quantaties of rubbish thrown all over the island - everywhere you go - cans, plastic bottles, fast food containers, furniture you name it. If our moronic government starts charging there will be much more. Cut back on welfare and get the dole takers to pick up this rubbish
Posted by David Morgan on
I concur with Havelock Jones, a study by the Jill Dando Institute of Crime Sciences, University of London, did a study into the causes of fly tipping (the illegal deposit of waste), disclosed that additional charging for waste disposal, was a major contributory factor.
Householders already pay rates, surely these charges already include paying for waste disposal.

If people start fly tipping all over the island this will impact on the environment and tourism. The authorities will have to have illegally tipped waste cleared up and this will have additional costs which will negate the charges Eddie Noel has in mind.

This is another example of how the States are 'penny wise, but pound foolish.'
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