Call for honest answers in Newcastle's bins crisis

May 12, 2016 4:08 PM
We understand the difficulties of operational managers and appreciate their fire-fighting, which can't be easy. However …..
The media/social media silence of the otherwise "never off the media" Leader of the Council is noted by many. When there's a tricky issue, keep a low profile and leave it to others seems to be the approach.
Well, I think members (and the public) deserve a lot more than they have been given so far, so here are my questions which I have emailed to the Leader and Labour Councillors:
What is the current situation on negotiations, how far apart are the sides, are you meeting daily to try to reach a resolution, what are the prospects of agreement in the next few days? Who is leading the negotiations on the council side - is the Chief Executive taking a personal lead?
Why were the new arrangements implemented without there being agreement? Who authorised this? Did the Leader and CE approve?
If there is insufficient capacity each day through "normal/contract working" to empty the bins to schedule, then surely this means that the backlog will just increase - even with overtime working it doesn't seem to be being contained.
Given that normal schedules are out of the window, who is deciding which areas are collected first?- it seems that some areas are constantly in arrears, and some others much less so.
What is the cost of the overtime that has been worked so far?
On communications - the message of "doing all we can" has now been run out in the website for three weeks. Not all areas in arrears are mentioned, which irritates even more. The twitter and facebook pages simply refer back to the website. Can we not give more precise information?
I hope I might (a) get some honest answers from the Leader and (b) avoid the torrent of abuse that was directed towards Marc Donnelly two weeks ago.
Cllr David Faulkner