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Expensive and undemocratic contracts need to be seen by the many not the few

We await the truth behind the GMB leaked e-mail suggesting Veolia have been burning waste due to be recycled since 2011. Greens warned from the start that the Veolia contract would offer no incentive to increase recycling as the incinerator would need to be fed waste. Sixteen years on our woeful recycling rate is miles behind other South Yorkshire councils.

Getting to the truth could be difficult. Like Streets Ahead, the Veolia contract is only publicly available in a heavily redacted form that strips out all the key information the public wants to know. What we are told by spokespersons about these contracts and working relationships with the council can never be verified. The Veolia contract may be terminated early in 2018 but Streets Ahead is due to last until 2037. That’s 20 more years of not knowing what the council signed us up to and what is being done to us using the taxes we pay.

The street trees campaign has shown why we have to fight for transparency. The protest injunction court case might see key parts of the Amey contract revealed in public doing us all a service. These expensive and undemocratic contracts need to be seen by the many not the few.

Eamonn Ward
Sheffield Green Party

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Topics: City Wide, Council, Eamonn Ward, Featured, Letters to the press, Privatisation, Recycling, trees