Amendments to Schedule 2 of the Controlled Waste Regulations which should have been introduced on 6 April have been delayed following a “substantial number” of consultation responses.
According to Defra’s initial consultation, regulatory changes which could have allowed local authorities to both charge for and dispose of waste from schools, hospitals and universities – known as “schedule 2” – were due to be laid before Parliament on 6 April 2011, with the provisions relating to those charging powers to formally begin in April 2012.
However, Defra has now confirmed that the 6 April date will not be met, due to the substantial number of responses that were received.
A Defra spokesman said: “The consultation responses are currently being analysed and ministers will take the comments into account when taking their final decisions.”
It is not known when the regulations will be laid, but a spokesman commented: “We are working towards laying them as soon as possible.It is intended that the powers will commence in April 2012, as proposed in the consultation.”
B&M Waste Services chief executive Peter Cooke said: “We were disappointed that the Government’s proposed legislation changes to Schedule 2 waste have now been postponed. This is a huge lost opportunity for local government to reduce costs. With the budget cuts that are coming into place next month, giving local authorities the power to manage their own waste costs would have been beneficial. From a commercial stand point, the proposed changes would deliver a fair competitive market place for waste and recycling at Schedule 2 facilities.”
“Schedule 2 premises now remain a grey area on the waste management landscape. We remain confident that the resultant legislation, following the consultation, will be of benefit to waste management companies, as well as local authorities and largely welcomed. However, as the costs will be pushed down to the actual waste producer, it will therefore have an effect of encouraging Schedule 2 organisations to be more cost aware and potentially recycle more waste to reduce their future waste disposal costs.”