From The Mirror 14 JAN 2016 (link)
A disgruntled homeowner has been billed £25 by her local council – because her bin was stolen from outside her house.
Emily Cole’s new ‘slimline’ 140-litre wheelie bin has gone missing and she has been told she will have to fork out to replace it.
The digital media officer, who lives in Cardiff, had been in her home for just four weeks before her bin went missing.
“On the morning of December 6, after Storm Desmond, it wasn’t outside my house,” she said.
“I checked all the houses down my street and couldn’t find it and it couldn’t have blown away down a 200-metre street – that’s ridiculous.”
The 26-year-old said being charged to replace the pinched bin was unfair, reports Wales Online.
“I bought this house six months ago and have been paying council taxes the whole time on an empty property and I’ve now been hit with a bill for something that wasn’t even my fault,” she said.
Cardiff council introduced bin changes to areas of the city in an attempt to encourage recycling after missing their recycling target by 2% in 2013-14.
They introduced new smaller 140-litre wheelie bins, unique bin bags, 240-litre garden waste bins and reusable garden sacks to homes across the city.
The council said the £25 bill for lost or stolen bins was necessary to reduce costs.
A spokesman said in 2013-14 it spent £63,000 on replacing lost bins so it was now up to residents to pay the price.
Miss Cole said since her bin disappeared she has been forced to share with her neighbour.
“The council is being stubborn because they won’t collect my rubbish bags if I leave them on the street so at this stage I’m using my neighbour’s bin,” she said.
“I assume the council is waiting for me to buy one but I don’t think that’s up to me to do so I’m not going to.”
She added: “Surely the council has plenty of unused bins lying around in a warehouse somewhere after ‘bingate’.”
A council spokesman said: “While we have sympathy with residents who have bins stolen it can’t be the responsibility of the council to fund replacements.
“Therefore we make a charge for new bins but no profit is made by the council as a result of this transaction.
“This charging policy is also common across the UK.
“We do encourage all residents to ensure that their bins are stored in a secure place and to report any stolen or found bins to us.”