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Reporting Back: Answers to Questions

by burylibdems on 1 May, 2018

Earlier this month was the regular meeting of Bury’s Full Council. The Liberal Democrat team always take the opportunity to ask our full quote of questions to the Leader of the Council. Here are some highlights:

We asked about the levels of uncollected bins:
Could the Leader inform members of the numbers of bins which are reported by residents as uncollected, by bin type, for the previous three financial years?

The total number of bins reported to the Customer Contact Centre as missed for the previous 3 financial year. The figures do not include the self-serve missed bins forms and are based on a total of 82,850 properties and does not include any increase for new properties over the 3 year period.

(summary – for the full figures by colour of bin see the link below)
2015/16 – 5495
2016-18 – 7141
2018-19 – 6454

Missed collections may be as a result of several reasons such as access problems particularly in narrow back street collections, weather conditions and mechanical breakdown.

Apparently these figures do NOT include bins reported as not collected through online forms, which seems like a gap in the system especially the Council is encouraging people to use online more. We will follow up on this.

In a previous meeting of the Council, we were given a promise that bus lanes in the south of the Borough would be reviewed. (This followed the successful removal of the bus lane on Rochdale Road in Bury.) We asked why nothing had happened yet:

The review will not take place until the GM Congestion Plan and GM Air Quality Plan have been completed and their requirements fully determined and understood. This is because there is a possibility that the emphasis on bus lanes may have change in order to drive through meaningful progress to meet the aspirations of these plans. Consequently, any bus lane review undertaken too early would result in the outcomes being framed in completely the wrong context.

We asked about media reports about LED Street lights:
Recent reports have indicated that LED street lighting can have a negative impact on both wildlife and on human eyesight. Could the Leader inform members what actions are being taken to review this information what impact will this have on our lighting policies?

There has been much discussion on this issue, with many articles being published in the press and online. Unfortunately, many articles (both for and against) appear to be personal opinion without any credible source, or appropriate professional qualification of the author. As such, it is a difficult task to sort fact from fiction at this moment in time.
Staff are not aware of any official advice, or guidance, identifying any risk to health.
The Scientific Committee on Health, Environment and Emerging Risks (SCHEER) produced a Preliminary Opinion on “Potential risks to human health of Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)”, which was adopted on the 6th of July 2017.
Section 6.11 “Overall conclusion” states: “The Committee concludes that there is no evidence of direct adverse health effects from LEDs in normal use (lighting and displays) by the general healthy population.”
All LED lanterns used within the Borough have been sourced from reputable, well established, manufacturers and conform to all
Council Questions – 11 April 2018
required British and European standards.
Our main supplier is Philips Lighting, whose LED lanterns conform to BS EN 62471 Risk Group 1 – No photobiological hazard under normal behavioural limitations.
Staff will continue to monitor information provided by the manufacturers, guidance from the respective professional bodies, such as the Institution of Lighting Professionals, and also information provided by the Council’s Health & Safety Advisors, who often receive information and guidance from the Health & Safety Executive.
It is not possible to say what impact this will have on our policies until a specific risk has been identified.

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