Council warns bin sharing ‘deception’ would be breaking the law

The Boston Borough Council building.
The Boston Borough Council building.

Boston Borough Council has warned people that trying to cheat the council by registering one property for multiple bins would be committing an offence under the Theft Act.

Boston Borough Council has warned people that trying to cheat the council by registering one property for multiple bins would be committing an offence under the Theft Act.

The warning comes following a post on Facebook suggesting residents could save half the £30 annual cost for the emptying of each additional bin.

However, a council statement said this would ‘be a clear case of obtaining services by deception’

The statement said: “Neighbours will be allowed to share a single bin where one bin is sufficient between two properties. The council thinks this fair. But one resident will not be allowed to register for more than one bin and then share the second, or subsequent bins, with a neighbour.

“This has been made clear in the terms and conditions which those signing up to the service have to agree to abide by.”

The authority says it will be checking the ownership of bins, including using ‘in-cab technology to double check’.

They added: “One of the saddest aspects of this is the suggestion that the paltry saving made by this deception (less than 3p a day) would be ‘better in your pocket than in Boston Borough Council’s’.

“The facts are that the Local Government Act 2003 Section 93 (1) provides the local authority with the power to charge for discretionary services. Any charges that are made must be only for the purposes of recovering the cost of such provision.

“So those defrauding the service would be defrauding those doing the right thing and paying for the service.”

The council has confirmed to The Standard it will not be taking any action against the individual at this time.

The council also responded to another Facebook user who announced ‘I will put my grass cuttings into a black bag, drive it up the road and dump it’.

It said: “As well as being grossly anti-social this would be littering at best, attracting a £75 fine, or fly-tipping at worst, for which there is no minimum penalty, but a maximum of a £50,000 fine and 12 months in jail.”

The authority said it believes the £30 annual charge for emptying the first bin, £15 for extra bins, is ‘a fair and reasonable charge for a valued and trusted service that it is not mandatorily obliged to provide’.

The statement said: “Only the user pays and those with no need of the service, most importantly those without a garden, are not subsidising the service.

“It also pulls the council into line with most other authorities where such a service is available.

“The bonus has been those in Boston borough who have taken advantage of the service for free since 2012.

“The world has changed since then and the borough council is faced, because of central Government funding cuts, with saving £2.3 million over the next five years, on top of the £2.4 million it has saved since 2009.”

It advised those who do not want to pay that they can take their garden waste to the Slippery Gowt tip for free, or compost at home.

Garden waste collections begin again on March 1 - free until April 1 when the new charge begins.

For more information visit www.boston.gov.uk/gardenwaste