Local bodies in Ernakulam asked to hike user fee for doorstep waste collection

The Department of Local Self Government has asked local bodies in Ernakulam to increase the user fee for doorstep collection of non-biodegradable waste as per the government guidelines.

The recommendation came after it was found that 17 grama panchayats were collecting user fee less than ₹50 per month. The revised government guidelines related to the user fee for solid waste collection issued in August last had stated that the local bodies could collect a minimum of ₹50 per month from households. The local bodies were permitted to collect a minimum amount of ₹100 from commercial establishments.

An assessment by the department in June had found that 32 grama panchayats were collecting a user fee of ₹30 or ₹40 per month. Of this, 15 grama panchayats revised the rate to ₹50 by August after getting the approval of the councils concerned.

Among municipalities, North Paravur and Eloor were found collecting user fee as per the quantity of waste. The normal user fee is applicable up to 5 kg of waste. Each additional kg will be charged ₹10. The department has told the local bodies to increase the user fee in tune with the quantity of waste. Necessary steps could be taken to increase the user fee as per the government guidelines, it said.

The local bodies that were yet to increase the user fee rate as per the government directive informed that a section of the waste generators was reluctant to pay the minimum amount of ₹50 monthly. They were found to be either burning the waste or dumping it in the open in violation of the rules after refusing to pay the prescribed fee.

The department has asked the local bodies to create awareness among the public on the need to collect and transport the waste as per the provisions of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016. The grama panchayats and municipalities should step up measures to penalise those found dumping or burning waste in violation of the rules. The cooperation of residents’ associations and other voluntary organisations could be sought to educate the public on scientific waste processing, it said.

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Printable version | Oct 16, 2021 6:33:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/local-bodies-in-ernakulam-asked-to-hike-user-fee-for-doorstep-waste-collection/article36570997.ece

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