BASILDON Council leader Phil Turner has denied reports that plans to cut waste services have been dropped.
Cllr Turner said the plans were simply on hold until after the council’s AGM in April.
He said his position had not changed since an interview which appeared in the Yellow Advertiser in December, when he announced he would postpone the decision until opposition parties had been given the chance to form a coalition and come up with an alternative.
Cllr Turner said in December that the plan – which included cutting waste collections from weekly to fortnightly and charging for the collection of green waste – could save £2m towards £9m of savings.
But late last year opposition parties joined forces to axe the council’s cabinet and switch to a committee system, which Cllr Turner said would leave him with insufficient power to implement the scheme.
Cllr Turner said he would not seek a decision before May, when the council will hold its annual general meeting and opposition groups will have the chance to form a coalition.
He said: “Let them make the decision, now I don’t have the confidence of anywhere near the majority. We are facing a £9m deficit. That’s not going away. The changes to waste have the potential to save us around £2m. Let them try and find it elsewhere and see how they get on.”
He reiterated today: “Deferring the decision doesn’t mean we are not going to do it. We just holding it until after the AGM and giving that decision to whoever forms the administration.”