Supporting Local News

Councillor wants local authority staff to go door to door to catch fly-tippers

Galway County Council needs additional staff to go door-to-door to determine how householders are disposing of their domestic waste – and to force them back into the system.

Just one quick inspection of an estate in Tuam, for example, resulted in an increase in the private bin collection service in the area from 50% to 75%.

The matter was raised by Cllr Shane Curley (FF) who has called on the local authority to provide additional resources to ensure householders are disposing of their waste legally.

The Loughrea area councillor is now advocating the recruitment of additional staff to be deployed on door-to-door checks to ensure householders can prove they are legitimately disposing of their waste.

This simple measure, he argued, could lead to a dramatic reduction in the amount of rubbish that is currently being dumped all over the county.

“People are sick of this. There are many parts of County Galway that are riddled with illegal dumping, and it is costing a fortune to clean it up,” he said.

Cllr Curley said that he took photos of an illegal dumping ground less than a mile from his own house and described it as ‘sickening’.

“We are getting strong assurances from Government Ministers Darragh O’Brien and Peter Burke who say that they are about to give a significantly improved funding package to the Council for the coming year,” he said.

“If so, then the recruitment of staff to combat illegal dumping has to be high on the priority list.

“Obviously there are the immediate issues such as the damage to the environment and the visual pollution, especially for tourist areas.

“One thing people tend to overlook, however, is the cost to the taxpayer. We spend millions cleaning up after the dumping takes place.

“A short-term investment in the inspection of houses to ensure that they are legally disposing of their waste stands to save us a fortune in the long run.

“In one estate in Tuam alone, a quick inspection led to an increase from 50% to 75% compliance in a matter of weeks,” Cllr Curley added.

Cllr Declan Geraghty (Ind) pointed out that there was no legal requirement for any householder to pay for a private waste collection service but, equally, they could not dump their rubbish indiscriminately along the sides of roads or in drains.

“It’s a scourge in rural areas no doubt but I would welcome such an approach,” he said.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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