Messaging left out on the verge

Illegally dumped, or maybe just a confused punter?

NOT everyone got the memo that Vincent council wasn’t doing bulk rubbish pickups this year, with a couple of garbage piles starting to appear on verges about town.

Verge collections were due to start April 20 but have been cancelled for now because the contractor had concerns about picking up contagious junk during the pandemic, and possible workforce shortages if staff had to quarantine.

A Voice reader wrote in noting they didn’t get anything in the mail alerting them to the suspension of hard waste pickups. 

“I would have thought that a similar pamphlet alerting us to the postponement and the reasons for it should have been distributed by now,” they wrote. 

“If not, many residents will put out their rubbish on the previously stated date to find that their junk will not be picked up and they may have to remove their items or possibly incur a fine for littering.”

The Voice has spotted two junk piles so far waiting vainly for a pickup, one on Carr Place and one on Morriston Street. Both piles have been wrapped up in City of Vincent-branded tape declaring it is “illegally dumped material under investigation”. 

The Vincent council website warns of an enormous $62,500 maximum fine for individuals convicted of illegal dumping under the state Environmental Protection Act.

We asked the council if they might go easy on these dumpers given they could well be out of the loop about the cancellation.

Mayor Emma Cole says “we are asking residents for their co-operation to remove items from the verge until a new collection is announced”.

She says the council didn’t send out a flyer promising any bulk pickup dates “and there are no plans to produce a flyer on the postponement.

“Flyers will be distributed once we have a new date for collection.”

Bulk pickup dates were posted up on the council website in March before being pulled down shortly afterwards. 

The bulk hard waste collection will be resumed once it’s “safe and practical” but the practice might not be around much longer in Vincent.

In the coming months councillors will consider whether to continue verge collections or to move to alternatives like tip passes, skip bin allowances, or some other system, to prevent the massive and unsightly piles of loot.

If you’ve got particularly smelly mattresses or whitegoods you need to get rid of sooner, the city’s still picking those up for a cost (from $20 for a mattress up to $66 for an aircon). 

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