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25 jobs to be lost at Cumbria's waste recycling centres

Twenty five jobs are set to go when cuts to opening hours at Cumbria’s recycling centres are implemented.

Fifteen people currently on fixed contracts will not have them renewed. The remaining 10 posts will be lost through voluntary or compulsory redundancies.

A month-long consultation with staff at the county’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) has begun and runs until December 6.

Staff who wish to apply for voluntary redundancy have until December 10 to get their bids into bosses.

The move comes as Cumbria County Council looks to save £1. 5 million by reducing opening hours across all of its 14 recycling sites and follows a public outcry sparked by the authority’s initial proposals to shut six centres permanently. The consultation on the job losses comes eight months after the threat of permanent closures was lifted by the cabinet U-turn made in March.

A council spokesperson said: “Since making the decision, the county council has been negotiating with its waste contractor Shanks on the necessary revisions to the £70m, 25-year contract. Making revisions to a contract of this size is a complicated legal and financial procedure, which is why Shanks’s sub contractor Cumbria Waste Management (CWM), who operate the HWRCs, have only just started the staff consultation on possible redundancies as a result of the reduced service.

“The final date for implementation of the HWRC network changes is subject to the detailed negotiations between the relevant parties, but is anticipated to be early in 2013. Likewise, the number of CWM staff who may be affected by the changes will be subject to operational modelling of the HWRC network, but it is anticipated that the changes could potentially affect 25 of CWM’s staff.

“Staff at HWRCs have long been aware of the intention to scale back operations and opening hours following the initial cabinet decision in March – so there are no surprises that the consultation is now beginning.”

They added: “The decision to reduce hours in HWRCs followed a full public consultation on original proposals to close six of the county’s least used HWRCs.

“The Cumbrian public strongly opposed closures, so the reduced hours option was deemed to be a preferable solution at a time when savings have to be made.

“The changes are necessary in order for the waste service to contribute to the county’s challenging financial savings target, and the council will work with Shanks and CWM to minimise the impact.”

Meanwhile Eddie Martin, leader of Cumbria County Council, has warned that the authority may have to slice up to £50m more off its budget in the next two years, putting more front-line services at risk.

The council is currently consulting on making £18m worth of savings in the next financial year, with Mr Martin warning that further cuts in 2014/15 will also be needed.

Visit www.cumbria.gov.uk for more details.

Have your say

What can I say? An absolute joke, can use not see what's going to happen here? We've just got the county cleaned up and your going to force people to fly tip again, these sites need to stay the same what a great service they provided to the public, start with yourselves first cause use just look out for your selves.

Posted by Fred on 5 December 2012 at 22:41

I think this is an absolute disgrace,they say they need to save 1.5 million yet it will cost 2 million to build the new proposed site. To all the people that use these facilities get your rubbish in early because i have heard that the staff working on these sites are going to strike over the christmas and new year period and in my opinion they rightly do so.

Posted by claire on 5 December 2012 at 18:56

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