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Thursday, 6 December 2012

Fine failing refuse contractor or get rid of them!

Many residents across Ealing are suffering from the continued poor level of service that Labour-run Ealing Council’s waste contractor, Enterprise, are providing.

Nine months after the contact started we are still left with a large number of streets that are dirty and unclean.
Last year my Council postbag contained a majority of complaints about the huge increase in parking charges.

Now a huge share is from residents annoyed with the following:

  • Missed collection of waste and recyclables
  • Streets not swept properly
  • Leaves not swept up
  • Uncollected bags of leaves
  • Reports of fly-tipped waste not collected quickly
  • New residents not knowing what they can recycle

A local resident e-mailed with the following observation: “…it appears that the whole of Bedford Park has been missed today for green box and food waste. The green boxes littering the area do not add to aesthetics! I have reported a missed collection on the website. Street-sweeping appears fairly haphazard and there are piles of uncollected leaves, and uncollected bags of leaves. We have a repeated problem with fly-tipping…I had to report the fly-tipping three times over about two weeks before it was removed - I was told 'nothing was there', when it clearly was.”

Uncollected waste
Extracts from internal Council documents read: “…the level of reported daily missed collections remains
unsatisfactory” and “…performance appears to have deteriorated…”

The Liberal Democrats believe that Ealing Council needs to take tougher action against Enterprise. They have failed in many areas and although they may be trying, they really appear to have made little progress especially when you factor in the large number of extra staff they have collecting household waste and recyclables.

The number of missed collections has been worse than the acceptable level for EACH of the last seven months (April to October) from the available data.

So far Ealing Council appears spineless when asked about fining Enterprise for their poor level of service. From an investigation I uncovered that Ealing Council incurred additional expenditure by having to take on staff to deal with the high number of complaints from residents who suffered missed collections. So WE pay for THEIR mistakes!

Recyclables not collected as well!
I am all for giving people a chance but nine months is a long time. Either fine Enterprise to show you mean business or get rid of them. From the last set of monthly figures I saw, our streets were dirtier than the previous month. Only 7 wards had an improvement, 16 had worsened! Having clean streets should be the norm. Dirty streets should be the rare exception.

Liberal Democrats say that if you hire a contractor, you have to make sure they will deliver. And if not, the contract needs to ensure that poor performance results in the contractor losing out. In any other setting Enterprise would be sacked, taken to the courts to pay substantial damages.

If you have a story where your street is dirty or your waste is left uncollected please let me know using email or Twitter via: @CllrGaryMalcolm


  1. My green-bag garden waste not collected yesterday. Reported this at 11.25am today - not collected today (despite website statement that if reported before midday it would be collected the same day.)

    Second issue - when we all had pink bags and a general collection - no problems. Now, a green bag indicates that you've paid for the service - so green bags get stolen!

    Third issue - why no collection for a month over December-January? Half my autumn leaves still have to go, and because of the rota Enterprise have set I won't get another collection for almost six weeks.

  2. I did a Freedom of information request regarding missed collections and the figures are staggering. In March 2012, the last month of the previous contractors there were 1007 missed collections. The following month, the first of Enterprise's contract 8591 missed collections were reported.
    If we take the period April 2012 - Jan 2013 (Enterprise) and compare it with April 2011 - Jan 2012 (previous contractors) the total of reported missed collections was 49051 compared to 9904... make of that what you will!