Council reveals cost of bin dispute to taxpayers

Councillor Gordon Munro
Councillor Gordon Munro
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The final cost of the bin dispute to the taxpayer was £5.5 million, it was confirmed today.

The city council has confirmed that the gross cost totalled £3.7m in 2009/10, £1.1m in 2010/11 and £732,000 in 2011/12.

The dispute lasted more than two years, with notice of it being served on the council in July 2009 and normal working practices resuming in October 2011.

Labour councillor Gordon Munro said: “There has been a big cost to the city financially but also in terms of reputation and, importantly, in the service received by citizens.

“This has been hidden from sight in the hope that the failed privatisation bid for cleansing would provide a private sector solution. It hasn’t, it didn’t, and we have paid a large price for intransigence.”

Councillor Andrew Burns, leader of the Labour group, said: “When the cost of the dispute is taken with the costs of the privatisation of council services, the council have expended large sums of money which could have been better used elsewhere.

“I hope that price is not paid by council workers whose jobs are up for discussion at the Special Full Council meeting on privatisation on January 19.”