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Covering the Central Highlands
Central West Queensland

Government & Schools

20 February, 2021

Illegal dumping disgusts residents

Illegal dumping a contentious issues for Capella locals..

By Mel Frykberg

Illegal dumping at Cepella has angered some resident. PHOTO: Maddelyn Tasker

LOCAL residents are up in arms about illegal dumping throughout the region, following the removal of dumping skips outside locked waste facilities. 

Capella resident Maddelyn Tasker said a pile of garbage had been dumped illegally after the Central Highlands Regional Council (CHRC) several weeks ago removed two dumping skips that were placed outside the locked-up waste area. 

“This is what happens when our council decides to lock our dump and put silly hours on it,” Ms Tasker said. 

“I’ve lived in Capella for 25 years and have never seen this happen until now. 

“Love to see the rates I pay going to someone to pick this up instead of doing something productive. 

“Thanks Central Highlands Regional Council, always “fixing” things that weren’t a problem.” 

According to Ms Tasker, the problems first began when the Council changed the waste facility's operating hours. 

“The dump site is only open at certain hours which clash with the working hours of a normal working person,” she said. 

“Previously the dump was open for longer hours but now people can only dump between 8 and 11am on a Sunday. 

“Who is going to be getting up early on a Sunday to dump their trash then? 

“People are now dumping anywhere after the two skips were moved.” 

However, Council challenged Ms Tasker’s claims about the hours the transfer station were operating. 

According to a council spokesperson, between November 30, 2020 and January 18, 2021, council constructed a transfer station at Capella and rehabilitated the old landfill in line with environmental legislation.  

“The landfill had been dormant but unrehabilitated for a while,” they said. 

“The new transfer station is about a minute’s drive up the road from the old site. 

“It was a legislative requirement that council relocate, upgrade the transfer station and rehabilitate the old landfill site. 

“During this construction phase, Council closed the transfer station.  

“To maintain waste services during this time, skip bins were placed outside of the transfer station.  

“These were open from 7.00am to 5.00pm seven days a week.  

“Residents enjoyed an increase in hours during this time.” 

CHRC said with the opening of the new transfer station, the operating hours had gone back to what they used to be: Monday to Thursday 8.00am to 11.00am, and Sunday 8.00am to 12noon. 

“These opening hours were introduced with the Queensland Waste Levy coming into effect,” the spokesperson said. 

“At the time, Council’s Manager Planning and Environment committed to a review after one year.  

“This review was undertaken and extended the original hours to make it more convenient based on feedback from Capella residents.  

“This was completed in 2020.” 

General Manager Communities John McDougall said Council strongly condemned illegal dumping as an irresponsible behaviour that added unnecessary cost. 

“Capella is one of our official Tidy Towns and we often struggle to find sites for the annual community Clean Up Australia Day, so I encourage people to honour this and cease illegal dumping,” he said. 

“Our ideal world is all about conveniences, and I realise that the opening hours require some planning for people. 

“However, they’re common practice and in line with other areas in the wider region. 

“Also, in an ideal world, we could rely on people doing the right thing when it comes to sustainable and environmentally conscious behaviour around waste disposal. 

“Instead, we must have staff on-site, and budgets play a considerable role when determining opening hours and staffing. 

“The Queensland Waste Levy has brought changes for people, businesses and local government that we’re working through for a shared goal.” 

Clean-up of the site was underway last Monday. 


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