Lake Macquarie lacks town centre recycling strategy

COMMERCIAL recycling is lagging behind household waste schemes, with Lake Macquarie council yet to develop a town centre strategy.

However, the council will collect recycling from businesses for $65 a year.

This charge is for a service similar to the domestic service - a yellow-lidded bin collected fortnightly.

Of the 4000 rate-paying businesses in Lake Macquarie, 750 opt for the council to collect their recycling.

All businesses have the mandatory $425 annual payment for weekly general waste pick-up but the majority don't opt for the additional service.

This commercial general waste is mixed with other collections from footpath and park bins and delivered to Lake Macquarie's Awaba Waste Management Facility.

The state government has proposed a waste levy be introduced at all waste management centres.

It appears that all material sent to landfill will attract the levy, but, the state government is still working on the levy's details.

The council does know it will apply to its facility and it intends to recover the cost through gate fees and commercial and domestic waste management charges.

Lake Macquarie council's director city strategy Tony Farrell said rising costs would encourage more businesses in town centres to sign up for the council's recycling collection.

"Until the waste levy completely takes over and makes landfill totally unaffordable, businesses are likely to opt for lower-cost services," he said.

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