Cheshire West and Chester Council is under fire in the student area of Chester after imposing some ruthless fines on young couples in the Parkgate Road area. The council recently launched a new refuse system whereby recyclable goods are collected on different days from their respective coloured containers but have been criticised for their poor communication regarding the different days this waste should be put outside houses.
Despite households complaining to the council about the lack of information, nothing was seemingly done to rectify the situation. One couple in particular then decided to put their rubbish out on the usual day in the hope it would be collected due to the fact that their back garden had become cluttered and smelly.
To their dismay, this refuse was not collected and although no phone calls, letters, e-mails or any other form of communication was made – the black bags were simply plastered with yellow tape and a £50 fine was imposed. Residents were outraged at this as they were simply trying to get their waste taken in a bit to maintain levels of sanitation.
Although these households were extremely disgruntled at the fines, they are said to have taken this on the chin despite the large amounts they already pay Cheshire West and Chester Council for their council tax, being in the CH1 district of the city.
The whole situation has been compounded recently, as the council have again missed collection dates. Households who have been subject to the fierce fines, despite no warnings have also had their waste left outside their homes leading them to wonder why they can’t issue fines themselves. Indeed, the council are able to fine couples earning small salaries on a whim but are unable to provide the simple services for which Chester citizens pay their substantial council tax rates.
Many households have taken to communication platforms such as Twitter to voice their concerns after getting little or no response from members of council tax staff over the telephone. Cheshire West and Chester Council have not responded however, choosing simply to tweet about potholes instead.
The households that have been affected by this issue are not confident that anything will come of their tweets and have been left enraged that after paying what they thought were grossly unfair fines, they have not received their basic services and have again left with rubbish outside their homes. They have been quick to remove this rubbish for fear at getting another ruthless and frankly, rather cheeky fine.
Whether Cheshire West and Chester council reimburse these households remains to be seen, but individuals seem to be apprehensive about asking for fear of incurring further fines.