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GMB union backs Liverpool council's waste plans

The GMB union has backed plans by Liverpool City Council to set up an arms-length company to take over waste collections in the city.

The union has thrown its weight behind the plans to replace the current joint venture with Amey, whose contract expires in November.

GMB members have agreed in principle to support the council’s plans for Liverpool Waste Management and Related Services (LMW) to take over from the current Enterprise Liverpool.

LMW will be given the task of cutting costs and increasing recycling rates to 55% by 2020 and 65% by 2025.

A cabinet report for Liverpool council said the city spent £22.3m on waste management services and the new company will be given the task of finding approximately £1m ar year in efficiency savings.

Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson, above, said it was an opportunity to introduce a service in which all parties would work together.

“The new proposed service arrangements will support us in reaching our aspirations and our recycling target, which will deliver major savings to taxpayers of the city,” he said.

“Our overriding aim is to ensure that residents have an efficient, high-performing refuse and recycling collection service. They want to know that their bins will be collected, when we say we are going to collect them.”

George Patterson, GMB regional organiser, said: “The trade union has worked extremely hard with the mayor in delivering an agreement that we believe will improve the refuse and recycling service and will also reduce the cost of the service to the council.

“We look forward working with the new company and the mayor to help deliver his vision of a cleaner, brighter, sparkling city.”

The formation of a council-owned company in Liverpool comes as also Bristol announced plans to transfer it’s waste management to new city council-owned Bristol Waste Company (BWC) from contractor Kier (formerly May Gurney).

The new system will be operated by BWC for a year while the council looks in full detail at the best long-term service model.

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