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Second councillor clarifies recycling stance

Created on 10/05/2017 @ 08:25
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A newly elected county councillor in south Powys has contacted us to clarify her position on recycling after being accused by Welshpool Town Council of being unsupportive.

Rachel Powell was elected to represent Beguildy last Friday, but took part in a Welshpool-led survey asking those standing for election on their view regarding the reduction of opening days for the town’s recycling centre.

She, and Cllr David Jones of Guilsfield, were the only ones deemed as not being supportive to reversing the county council’s decision. Cllr Jones clarified his position to us yesterday and this morning Cllr Powell has also come to us directly after saying the town council “disappointingly publicised an incorrect account of our communication” which she has shared with us.

In that communication it is clear that Cllr Powell praises the town council for its community work in picking up the street cleaning project from Powys, but she does say that it would be “irresponsible of me to criticise this decision until I understand the full factual debate and rationale for such measures”.

This was her full response to the Town Council request for her stance. It must be pointed out also that she sent this last month when she was merely a candidate and prior to being elected.

“Firstly, thank you for your correspondence and raising this issue. Apologies for the delay in response but, it is a busy time and meeting my communities has been the top of my agenda.

“As you can appreciate, in my current capacity I am unable to influence any decisions previously made by the current cabinet members and it would be irresponsible of me to criticise this decision until I understand the full factual debate and rationale for such measures. 

“However, it is very clear that recycling is one of the current issues for my ward and the feedback response has been mixed in view to recycling centres. I would like to reassure you that this subject is on my list to explore if, I am successful in being elected.

“I would however recommend audit, satisfaction surveys and the community itself looking at solutions in how this system can be improved, bearing in mind cost and most importantly, the 'compliance and incentive' of all community members in 'responsibly' recycling.

“Partnership working is critical in any change agent in moving forward.

“I hope this is helpful and I look forward to meeting the Welshpool Town Council in the future, dependent upon the outcome of the election process.”

Welshpool’s recycling centre is only currently open three days a week, with residents angry at the new strict measures in place.

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