BOLTON’S Labour-run council has moved quickly to insist it has no plans to charge people for bin collections.
The move comes after reports in the national newspapers indicated that Liberal Democrat education minister David Laws believes local councils could respond to a cut or freeze in the central government grant by charging for services such as bin collections.
A number of authorities have already started charging for the collection and disposal or recycled items and garden waste.
But Cllr Nick Peel, Bolton Council’s cabinet member for the environment said: “I think that idea is crazy really and Bolton Council has no plans whatsoever to introduce charges for bin collections — that is completely barmy.
“If the government is genuinely concerned about the ability of local authorities to deliver services then they should give them adequate money to be able to provide those services.”
Bolton’s Liberal Democrat leader, Cllr Roger Hayes said he believes Mr Law’s comments could simply be a political response aimed at Tory local government secretary Eric Pickles.
He said: “I wouldn’t be very happy to see charges for bin collections — but I think this may just be a response to Mr Pickles attempt to force councils to bring back weekly collections — I don’t think there’s much love loss there.”