Waste Management

11.01.17

Sheffield council considers cancelling waste contract 20 years early

A waste contract intended to run until 2036 could be cancelled early as Sheffield City Council struggles to balance its budget, potentially putting 180 jobs at risk.

The council said the contract with Veolia, signed in 2001, no longer offered value for money. It will discuss implementing alternate arrangements at a cabinet meeting on 18 January.

Veolia currently collects and disposes of waste, runs recycling centres, manages and operates the Energy Recovery Facility at Bernard Road and the district heating network, and collects bulky items and abandoned vehicles.

Cllr Bryan Lodge, cabinet member for the environment at Sheffield City Council, said: “It is no secret that we are operating in very tough financial times and we have to do things differently.

“Our contract with Veolia, which was signed 16 years ago, is no longer meeting our needs and is no longer compatible with the tough financial landscape in which the government is forcing us to operate.”

Sheffield is seeking to make £40m of cuts, as its deficit could reach £116m by 2021-22.

Cllr Lodge added that the local authority will consult with the 180 Sheffield residents employed by Veolia before implementing the changes, and that waste and recycling services would remain unaffected unless it said otherwise.

A Veolia spokesperson said: “We are proud to stand by our operational record in Sheffield in delivering sustainable environmental performance and value for money whilst minimising risk to the client. Veolia has also always been happy to discuss different service options with the council over the course of our partnership and will continue to work with the authority to deliver efficient services.

“We obviously recognise that this statement by the council to discuss alternative service options will be a concern to our employees and will do our utmost to support them and keep them informed as this matter progresses.”

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