Monday, 31 July 2017

Rushmoor's new council contract offers major savings and improved services to residents

A new ten-year contract to provide Rushmoor Borough Council’s bin collection services, street cleaning, public toilet cleaning, grounds and parks maintenance, launched on Monday 31 July.
 
As well as saving £650,000 a year, the new contract offers a number of improved services to residents on top of existing services, including weekly collections of small household electrical items and a shift from fortnightly to weekly battery recycling collections.
 
Residents simply need to leave their small household electrical items and bagged-up batteries on either their rubbish or recycling bin lid on any week and they will be collected for recycling.
 
As the new bin teams will be now working on all bank holidays, except Christmas and New Year, collection days will no longer normally change, also making it easier for residents.
Street and pavement cleaning is being improved with a ‘back to basics, attention to detail’ approach and neighbourhood-based street cleaning teams using barrows.
 
There is a new fleet of quieter vehicles, some of which will be electric and have electric bin lifts, and over time, more improvements will be made as the contract progresses. These will include the introduction of dog fouling campaigns also using the ‘Fido’ dog poo cleaning machine; the development of a community nursery; the recruitment of ‘community champions’ to report local issues; and a new customer website to make it easier for residents to report problems, such as missed bins and to book services, including bulky waste collections.
 
Weed control is also being improved, with two additional sprays a year being introduced to compensate for the reduction in service by Hampshire County Council. In addition, street sweeping vehicles now have weed brushes attached to control the growth of weeds on roads and pavements.
 
The new contract is with Hampshire-based Serco Environmental Services and is worth £38 million over the ten years.
 
Serco will also be introducing a number of commercial services to the borough’s residents and businesses, including wheelie bin cleaning, commercial waste collections and grounds maintenance services. In addition, the company will be working with the council to help residents to recycle more.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Councillor Martin Tennant, Rushmoor Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Environment and Service Delivery, said: “It has taken us 18 months and a lot of hard work to get to this point, but we are delighted at what we’ve achieved. We have improved services for our residents; there are lots of new and innovative schemes in the pipeline; and we have retained weekly bin collections – at the same time as making significant annual savings.
 
“We look forward to working with Serco and developing further the services we want for our residents.”
 
Jason Kinsella, Contract Director for Serco, said: “As a Hampshire-based business, we are very excited to be working in partnership with Rushmoor Borough Council to deliver and improve these vital services for local residents. All of our plans have been developed through listening to local people, and we’re determined to provide the local community with the highest quality of service.”