Heidi McDougall, named as the new borough Director Of Street Scene, comes as former Head of Environmental Services at Derbyshire Dales with a salary there of £55,000, benefits in kind of £1,000, employer pension contribution £7,000, total remuneration £63,000.
By comparison the current details for WLBC Director of Street Scene, now retired, include a salary of £63,720, benefits in kind £4,578 and pension contribution £8,678, total remuneration £76,971. Almost £14,000 more, and probably a removal to West Lancashire package too that promotion from within West Lancashire would exclude?
Until 2012 Derbyshire Dales waste and recycling collections were privatised to Veolia but in August 2012 under a new £20 million contract Serco took over. Oh dear! Sercockup was soon mired in complaints of poor service. The BBC reported “Residents in the Derbyshire Dales are calling on a council to take action against its refuse contractor after waiting weeks for bins to be emptied. The village of Tideswell was said by some to be “a disgrace” after rubbish was left uncollected for four weeks. Derbyshire Dales District Council has apologised and said it was “putting pressure on Serco, its contractor.
“Serco, which was awarded the contract in August, said it was rectifying the delays “as a matter of urgency”. The authority provides waste collection services to 33,000 households. One Tideswell resident Bob Walkden said “In the food caddy you put things like peelings and old kitchen waste – but they haven’t been emptying it. I’ve had it for four weeks, and with food waste that isn’t very clever”.
“Director of community services Peter Foley said the council was looking at Serco’s contractual obligations and putting pressure on the firm to provide an efficient service. He said “We always knew there would be some disruption to service – but what has happened is way beyond that”. and Mike Boult, Serco managing director, said “We are taking every possible step to resolve the problems with the waste and recycling collections. We would like to assure everyone our priority is to ensure everything is brought up to date as quickly as possible and a consistent and reliable service established to all residents”.
It’s ironic to read how what presumably had been a good service from Veolia but possible changed to a cheaper contract with Serco promptly lowered standards to the level described by residents. It’s to be hoped the new Director of Street Scene here isn’t coming with a mandate to look at changing our waste services to the likes of Sercockup? Watch this space!