Leader calls for return of 'green' tax
THE leader of Herts County Council is demanding that the Government returns money raised through landfill tax. Cllr Robert Gordon is supporting a move from the Local Government Association to persuade Environment
Leader calls for return of "green" tax
THE leader of Herts County Council is demanding that the Government returns money raised through landfill tax.
Cllr Robert Gordon is supporting a move from the Local Government Association to persuade Environment Secretary Hilary Benn to give back the cash.
He said the county council was spending more each year on landfill tax and the Government was not keeping its promise to repay a share of the money.
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"We are merely asking the Government to keep its pledge to return money so that we can use it to invest in refuse and recycling. That way we can reduce the amount of waste going to landfill.
The Government will be taking an extra £3.6 million from the county council in landfill tax over the next year.
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If the county council continues to send waste to landfill sites at the current rate the tax cost would increase from about £17 million to £28 million in 2010-11.
Across the country it has been estimated that local authorities will be paying £1.5 billion in landfill tax over the next three years.
Cllr Gordon said: "We simply cannot afford for things to carry on as they are.
"We are doing everything we can to reduce waste, but we need to invest more if we are to meet our targets of recycling and composting at least half of all household waste by 2012, and we will struggle to afford to do so if the Government pockets landfill tax," he said.
The Local Government Association said: "Landfill tax is designed to encourage people to throw away less, but at the moment it is unfairly penalising hard-pressed councils that need all the extra money from the tax returned to enable them to invest in better recycling facilities.