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Cut back on garbage or face higher taxes, warns mayor

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UNLESS households cut down on the garbage they produce, collection taxes will continue to rise, Yermasoyia mayor Kyriacos Xydias warned on Friday.

The Limassol area municipality is to launch an awareness campaign urging its residents to better manage their household waste, as the cost of operating the new waste treatment plant of Pentakomo is estimated to be five to six times higher than that of the Vati landfill. The new waste treatment plant, which is to replace the Vati landfill that is slated to close down, is expected to be up and running in October.

The rate of the tax increase, Xydias said, depends on how much trash households produce. If the volume is not reduced, he said, “the only certainty is that garbage collection bills will skyrocket”.

“This new procedure will create additional costs, thus, as municipalities and residents, we ought to act collectively, to reduce the volumes (of trash) that will end up at the Pentakomo unit,” Xydias said.

Yermasoyia municipality is to distribute a circular to its residents along with this year’s garbage collection tax, he said, on ways to recycle trash, but also electric devices, furniture and garden trimmings.

As regards bulky items, Xydias said that the Yermasoyia municipality will be in a position to transfer them, for a fee, to green spots which are expected to be up and running over the next couple of months.

The municipality has also installed several areas collection bins for glass, shoes and clothing items, while used batteries can be disposed of in the special bins in public buildings and banks. Residents can also safely dispose of expired pills and other pharmaceuticals in special bins found in all pharmacies in the area, he said.

In the case of used cooking oil, this is being collected by the three primary schools within the municipal area.

If residents of the municipality use any of these services, Xydias said, they can significantly reduce the garbage that would end up at the waste treatment plant.

“We either continue producing garbage without any control and end up paying €300 to €400 in garbage collection tax, or we recycle properly and keep the cost at low levels,” Xydias said.

To give an incentive, the municipality will offer a 20 per cent discount to all households that prove that they do home composting, Xydias said. He added that the municipality will offer 100 compost bins to people interested in participating in the scheme.

Xydias also warned that if any resident is caught disposing of any items illegally, they will be fined, or even taken prosecuted.

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