Ealing and Northfield

Questions: How much of your time has the council wasted?

In an attempt to get to the bottom of what happened with Ealing’s rubbish and recycling contract last month the Tory group on Ealing council asked a slew of 34 written questions at last week’s extraordinary council meeting on 8th May to discuss Labour’s rubbish fiasco.

The answers are required to be provided within 7 working days so councillors got an e-mail timed at 11.09pm last night. As it happens the attached pdf file was corrupted so it took until 8.28am this morning to get hold of something readable. The answers are still not up on the council’s website – anyone would think that the council does not want you to read them. You can read them here.

11 different Tory councillors asked questions. The 5 LibDem councillors had no questions as did the 40 Labour councillors – maybe they think that everything is fine.

Not all the Tory questions hit the mark, it is a bit like a game of battleships, but many did. The most telling question I think was question 14:

Question 14:

Can you please confirm the weight of dry-recycling that Ideal processed in April on behalf of Ealing? Can you also confirm the average monthly dry-recycling handled by Ealing in the last financial year?

Answer 14:

1062 tonnes were processed via the Ideal MRF in April 2012 according to data provided by the MRF. Whilst dry recycling kerbside tonnages average at about 1200 tonnes a month, the Ideal figure does not include collection data from the first week of the new contract when materials were sorted at the kerbside or data from the 4 kerbside sort rounds that have supported the comingled service over recent weeks. The overall collected dry figure is projected to be in line with steady state.

To clarify, normally the council collects 1,200 Tonnes of dry-recycling every month which is all carefully sorted and put out by our residents. In April almost 90% of this was chucked in the back of a lorry and driven to Kent. The council have tried to maintain that kerbside re-cycling has been continuing throughout their fiasco. It has, but on a tiny scale. 90% of residents’ hard work sorting out their recycling has been discarded in April. The council has let down residents badly.

3 replies on “Questions: How much of your time has the council wasted?”

Well done.

Just for starters on recompensing the tax payers of Ealing.

How many staff were taken off their normal non refuse job to help out?

How many hours did they spend?

What was the value of services lost to residents of Ealing because the staff had to attend to Enterprise instead of delivering their normal service?

What was the overtime bill?

Will Enterprise be paying money for each and every item listed above?

Just exactly what will be the bottom line in compensation that they should pay?

While the chief executive might discount his transfer charges to Enterprise with the cost of a haircut, as we assume he would have pulled all his hair out, how many hours has he himself spent in sorting out this mess? Same goes for those incompetent seniors.

Will Enterprise be paying for a new diary for Bassam so that he can learn the junior skills of organising himself like any normal human being? Or do we have to have a whip round?


Question 21. Did the council ask to see the contractor’s mobilisation plan and when was this seen by the council?

– The Council did ask to see the contractor’s mobilisation plan
– Initial draft presented to the Council in October 2011

This answer reeks of incompetence, how can one robustly manage this Environmental Services Contract (to ensure an adequate level of service during mobilisation) without scrutinising how the contractor is going to deliver the service.

Is this really acceptable? Should the Director of Environment & Leisure, and Officer responsible for managing and administering the contract be paid well over £100K + for failing to ensure the contractor was fully enabled, mobilised, and ready to deliver the service?

Question 31. How many meetings has the Portfolio Holder had with Directors of Enterprise since the implementation of the contract.

The Portfolio Holder has not kept a record of all of the meetings or conversations he has had with senior officers with Enterprise over the past few weeks. As you will be aware, he has had a number of meetings with Enterprise since 1st April, which have included meetings with senior representatives from the company.

This makes Bassam look like a complete idiot – I cannot believe that a senior person such as this does not minute/ record/ note meetings or important telephone discussions.


I have tried, in vain, to contact Ealing Council about garden re-cycling as my green bags have not been collected in a month. I completed forms and had an email back confirming they had received it. However, I still have full green bags.

The amount of time wasted trying to contact them by telephone is mind numbing and I still haven’t been able to speak to anyone just listened to endless, useless automated messages.

I won’t start on the potholes in the roads in Ealing!


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