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Waivers and waste collection in SDCC February 29, 2012

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Economy.
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What a loveable bunch they are down at Greyhound. For news comes that:

Dublin waste firm Greyhound is threatening to charge more than 17,000 waiver customers in south Dublin a full bin collection fee if the council or the Department of Social Protection does not subsidise the service.

Now one could ask as to what the benefit of a privatised waste collection service is if it’s not able to deliver the service that the council was delivering previously. Actually, that’s a good question. And what is the answer?
None that I can see or hear.

Greyhound agreed to provide the bin collection service to waiver customers for an initial 12-month period after South Dublin County Council deducted the cost from the agreed sale price when it sold the business to Greyhound last year.

As the agreement expires at the end of March, the private waste company today warned the council and the Minister for Social Protection that if the cost of the service, estimated at €2.8 million, is not subsidised it would have no other alternative but to charge waiver customers for the service.

Oddly enough neither company nor council mentioned this last March when the ‘purchase’ of SDCC’s waste collection business was unveiled.
Indeed anything but, as according to the Irish Times from that date.
:

The agreement allows the firm to expand its services to more than 70,000 homes in the south Co Dublin area. The company has pledged not to increase waste collection costs in the South Dublin County Council area,

And most importantly that sentence ended:

….and will honour all existing waivers.

Payment methods for consumers are unchanged.

Managing director Brian Buckley said the acquisition “fits perfectly” with Greyhound’s business development strategy.
“We can offer customers greater value for money because we can recycle more of their waste. We send less material to landfill than any other operator in the market, and we believe that our customers should benefit from the higher recycling rates that we achieve.”

Which is odd, in retrospect, because now Mr. Buckley is a lot less chipper.

Greyhound chief executive Michael Buckley said: “We need a resolution. These customers are struggling to survive financially, and they cannot afford to pay for the service. On the other hand we are a private operator and we can not provide an ongoing service free of charge.”
“We are informing our wavier customers in South County Dublin of the situation and are presenting them with a choice of payment plans which are the cheapest in the market.
“These customers are under no obligation to choose our service, and we accept that many simply can not afford to pay for a bin service,” he added.

And he continued:

“Greyhound has been presented with an enormous financial challenge after acquiring two loss making businesses. This is the basis of our pre-paid model. We are confident in our strategy to restore the businesses to profitability while providing customers with the cheapest prices and best service in the market,” said Mr Buckley.

‘Perfect fit’, or ‘enormous financial challenge’. Which one is it?

But this points us right back at SDCC who sold their ‘waste collection business’. Who will collect those bins? Who knows?
Though kudos to Greyhound for a most interesting ‘business development strategy’. Pity the hapless ‘customers’ weren’t told about it earlier.

Meanwhile speaking of Greyhound, here’s a report in the IT from February 2010.

THE FOUR Dublin local authorities have begun action against Greyhound Recycling for its failure to collect green bins from householders across the Dublin region last month.

Dublin City Council served the company with a “performance failure notice” on behalf of the four local authorities late last week for not fulfilling the service requirements in the contract they won from rival waste company Oxygen more than a year ago.

And, here’s one or two FG local representatives who in March 2009 were none too happy with Greyhound’s service in SDCC area.

Fine Gael councillor John Bailey and his daughter, Cllr Maria Bailey, have lodged a motion for the next council meeting, calling on the manager to cancel the contract with Greyhound because of poor service.
“I am appalled at the behaviour of the company over the last five weeks,” he said.
“I have been inundated with complaints and there have been bins everywhere. It’s no way to operate a service.”

And…

Fine Gael councillor Mary Mitchell O’Connor said her bin in Cabinteely was not collected for three weeks.
“I received a calendar setting out when the collection would take place, but it’s a work of fiction as there has been no sign of Greyhound on any of the days indicated,” she said.

Sounds familiar.

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1. Greyhound watch… …and the most expensive plastic bag I’ll have to buy this year. « The Cedar Lounge Revolution - December 8, 2012

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