The Welsh Liberal Democrats Assembly Member for South Wales West, Peter Black has questioned the decision of Neath Port Talbot Council to spend £316,170.80 purchasing 20,123 of their new wheelie bins from Germany, when other suppliers were available in the UK.
Mr. Black was responding to a freedom of information request which indicated that the decision by Labour councillors to spend £730,000 on switching to smaller wheelie bins across the County Borough, had initially sourced many of these bins abroad. The Council has since switched to a British supplier to buy the remaining bins.
"The Council has to get value for money from any purchase," said Mr. Black, "but they also have a duty to spend as much as they can locally so as to support local companies. The question is whether that process was followed this time, especially given the controversial nature of this expenditure. We need assurances that every opportunity was given to local companies to bid for this contract.
"Many residents felt that spending nearly three quarters of a million pounds on new wheelie bins was unnecessary and that the money could have been spent better on shoring up local services."