Pay-by-weight issue to become bigger than Irish Water

The imminent introduction of pay-by-weight charging for the collection of domestic waste is leading to an increase in the number of people illegally disposing of waste, a number of members of Mayo County Council said this week. The issue regarding the changes in how people will be charged for their waste disposal will become a very big issue in the coming months before its introduction in July of this year, according to a number of councillors, with the Cathaoirelach, Cllr Michael Holmes, saying: "It will become a much bigger issue than Irish Water was."

Fianna Fáil Cllr Brendan Mulroy told the meeting: "I've seen it first hand where rubbish is starting to appear in places where there was never rubbish before. That is a direct result of pay-by-weight coming further down the line. How are we going to stop this? How are we going to manage this to ensure this county is not overrun by litter? Because I assure you it is already happening.”

The Cathaoirleach of the council, Independent Cllr Michael Holmes, told the meeting that he has lands near the Windy Gap in Castlebar and in recent times he has also seen a major increase of illegal dumping in the area. "You'd need an artic truck to get it cleared up," he added.

Independent Cllr Michael Kilcoyne told the meeting that they could talk all week and month about the issue, but since the council privatised the waste collection business in the county, people are going to be at the mercy of private operators who can charge what they like for it. He said that the council should have stayed in the business of waste collection, because people can't afford the charges and will be able to afford them even less if they do go up in July.

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