Independent regulator needed for waste collection sector: Dooley

The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission’s questioning of the effectiveness of the price monitoring group set up by the Government to oversee the ending of flat rate waste collection reinforces the need for an independent regulator for the sector to be established, it has been suggested.

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Spokesperson on Communications, Climate Action & Environment Timmy Dooley said the refusal of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission to take part in the waste price monitoring group was extremely significant.

"Indeed it leads me to question the effectiveness of the Government established body. The Government’s handling of the waste charging regime over the past 18 months has been nothing short of shambolic.

"New charging systems were announced without any consultation and understandably people were extremely anxious that these new regimes would push up prices."

Mr Dooley said earlier this year he had brought forward a Private Members Motion in the Dáil calling for an independent regulator to oversee the sector.

"As an interim measure, a price monitoring unit was established; however the refusal of the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission to join the group raises serious issues about its viability, and essentially backs up my call for a regulator.

“We need to ensure that an effective competitive environment is created in the waste collection sector so that consumers are protected from price-gouging by unscrupulous operators. The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission comments today reflect these concerns.

“The Government should rethink its interim measure and move instead to the establishment of an independent regulator as a matter of priority", he concluded

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