Winchester and East Hampshire Councils to work together on waste

Winchester City Council and East Hampshire District Council are planning to work together on a major new refuse, recycling, street care and grounds maintenance contract, services which currently cost the two councils over £8 million a year.

The project will focus around saving money for council tax payers, maintaining high standards of service, being flexible to meet varying demands and finding new ways of generating income.

Cllr George Beckett, Leader of Winchester City Council said: “Council tax payers expect us to get the best value for money in providing services and we want to capitalise on every  opportunity that joint working presents. Winchester and East Hampshire are similar rural districts making it easier to find a beneficial solution that satisfies residents, councillors and the staff who operate the schemes. We believe that the two councils working together offers a realistic opportunity to secure efficiencies and cost savings for the future. We will also be keeping the option open for other districts to join with us, if there are opportunities for further savings at a later stage.”

Leader of East Hampshire District Council Ferris Cowper said: “We have decided to work with Winchester because we believe that this will provide the best value for money for local residents. The two councils already run similar waste and recycling services and so coming together is a natural way forward. Joint working is definitely the way forward and it fits with our aim of using creative and innovative methods to keep the council tax bill as low as possible.”

Work will now continue to draw up detailed proposals before councillors from both districts decide on the best way forward in November.