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Hopes of additional waste collections around NC500 could be dashed

By Scott Maclennan

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Drumbeg and similar beautiful areas are the sort of places that the motion wants to protect.
Drumbeg and similar beautiful areas are the sort of places that the motion wants to protect.

Hopes of providing additional bin collections on the NC500 appear doomed as a motion calling for the flexible and additional bin collection scheme credited with improving littering at various hotspots to restart was deemed expensive.

Overflowing bins on the NC500 lead to rubbish getting blown about some of Scotland's most beautiful areas as wave after wave of visitors seek to dump their rubbish rather than take it with them.

The motion was not heard at a previous council meeting because – like an earlier bid to slash rents for charities and volunteering organisations – there were cost implications.

That meant before being taken to a vote it would have to get the once over from officers to determine how much it would cost.

They came back with an estimate for additional collection that would cost £110,000 for a reduced 17-week period or £150,000 on a recurring basis for an annual 22 week period.

Councillors Richard Gale, Michael Baird, Jan McEwan and Angela MacLean argue that the move “made a significant difference to the levels of waste that was abandoned in some of the most scenic parts of the Highlands” and had been greeted positively by local communities.

Amid the council’s ongoing financial struggles, blowing a hole in the agreed budget to the tune of hundreds of thousands of pounds may be deemed unviable.

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