THERE are growing calls for Tweed Shire Council to change the way it carries out its twice-yearly household bulk rubbish collection as the shire continues to be trashed.
In some of the worst incidents, two huge mounds of household rubbish lay by the side of the Pottsville-Mooball Rd for more than two weeks before they were removed last week.
At Kingscliff, the jewel of the Tweed's tourism crown, residents complained the place looked like "a third-world country" with large mounds of garbage put out for the clean-up littering the streets for three weeks.
Kingscliff real estate agent Heather Steward said locals were often asked by tourists why the eyesore was allowed.
Last week she had a washing machine and wheelie bin that had been put out for collection thrown down her building's fire exit stairs. Previously a sound system was thrown into her building's pool.
"The council's answer was 'pay someone to remove them'," she says.
"I hope the council listens to the majority of locals who would be happy to phone and make an appointment time to have any rubbish collected."
The amount of rubbish the council is collecting over 10 weeks each year has grown in recent years from about 1800 tonnes to 2780 as illegal dumping increases.
Council's co-ordinator waste management, Rod Dawson, said the service was running three days late last week and four this week largely due to the increased tonnage slowing down garbage contractor Solo Resource Recovery.
Mr Dawson said the increase in rubbish had coincided with the gradual rise in the State Government waste levy with the tip rate going from $97 to $163.80 in recent years.
Mr Dawson said the council was looking at alternatives suggested by Solo, but the current system was very cost effective.
He said it was a quality service but "it frustrates me that the system is abused".
He cited as one of the worst recent cases a "communal" pile out front of a farm in the shire's south that had 10 trailer loads of rubbish, when only one trailer load is allowed. Some of the rubbish appeared to come from as far as Byron Shire.
Solo founder Idwall Richards says one of the problems is the flyer distributed by the council to advertise the pick-up does not more prominently state not to put out your garbage until the day before a resident's zone is collected.
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