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Dartford councillors argue over focusing on landfill in corporate objectives

Dartford Borough Council could replace its recycling performance indicator target and focus instead on the amount of material sent to landfill.

Under the current draft of the authority’s corporate plan, only the percentage of household collected waste going to landfill would be measured.

Dartford’s recycling rate dropped last year by two percentage points to 25.6%. Its landfill rate is negligible.

But the plan to drop the target has proved controversial with some councillors at the Conservative-run authority. Members at a cabinet advisory panel pointed out that a ’waste going to landfill’ related to a Kent County Council function, and that Dartford’s responsibility was to recycle material wherever possible.

Labour councillor Jonathon Hawkes told a local newspaper that he wanted the recycling target maintained.

A council spokesperson told MRW: “Suggestions were made for our cabinet to look at, which would concentrate more on the percentage that went to landfill and adding in the percentage that was incinerated.

“The cabinet has asked that we look at a range of possibilities and how we can best demonstrate that we’re not putting as much material into landfill. The target has not been dropped at the moment.

“The final document goes to our full council in two to three weeks’ time. The decision will be made then.”

Contractor Amey operates a two-stream, fortnightly kerbside recycling collection to around 38,000 households in the borough. The authority has no food waste collection service.

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