'Cash offer' for bin collections

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The Independent Online

Councils are to be encouraged to reinstate weekly bin collections with the lure of financial incentives, it was reported tonight.

More than half of local authorities have shifted to fortnightly collections of general household rubbish in recent years as part of an attempt to encourage people to recycle more.

So-called alternate week collections have proven highly unpopular with householders amid concerns that leaving rubbish for up to a fortnight is unhygienic and attracts vermin. There are also claims that it has led to a rise in fly-tipping.

Calls by the Government to revert to traditional weekly collections have been largely ignored.

But according to The Daily Telegraph, ministers are set to offer financial incentives to councils if they reinstate the weekly collections. A similar scheme was used to encourage town halls to freeze council tax this year.

The budget for the plan is thought to be about £100 million, the paper said.

It will apparently be included in the waste review to be published shortly by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

A Defra spokesman described the report as "speculation".