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Council set to compete with private sector on waste

Created on 13/04/2018 @ 16:22
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The number of businesses in Newtown and throughout Powys turning to private operators for waste and recycling collections is hitting Powys County Council's revenue.

Council officers have recommended a "redesign" of its commercial waste and recycling service to compete with the private sector.

A report delegated for decision Cllr Phyl Davies, Portfolio Holder Highways, Recycling and Assets has said the council needs to be more commercially focussed to ensure it can provide such trade services.

It states: "This service is provided to 1400 businesses in Powys, with an annual turnover in excess of £1m, using a variety of collection receptacles with a differential charge between residual waste and recycling in order to incentivise businesses to recycle as much of their waste as possible and hence contribute towards the Council’s Statutory Recycling Target.

"For many years the Council was the sole provider of this service which has allowed prices to be set at a standard rate and thus maximise recycling from the waste stream whilst maintaining customers.

"As with many local authorities, competition has now increased within the marketplace, which means that the Council needs to compete in order to avoid losing customers, particularly the larger ones, leaving the Council to pick up waste and recycling from the smaller businesses."

It adds: "The Council is in a unique position to provide these services due to the synergies with the domestic collection service, but does need to operate a more commercial basis in order to gain and keep businesses and ensure the long term viability of the service."

The proposal could see new technology being implemented to help weigh waste and provide "real time" billing.

The report said: "It is proposed to redesign the trade service to be more flexible in terms of price, billing options and delivery. This may mean that a different level of service and pricing is applied to businesses dependent on type and location. 

"A flexible range of billing options will help customers find a pricing scheme suitable for them.

"A robust marketing and sales strategy will need to be developed along with a targeted action plan to increase market share. To ensure our continued success in the competitive market the service must understand customer demand, the marketplace and offer options that are tailored to customer needs, whilst ensuring that the service is commercially viable."

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