LANDFILL tax should be spent on improving local recycling facilities rather than going into government coffers, Hounslow Council says.
The council saved £2.5million last year by improving recycling rates and reducing waste sent to landfill, thus slashing the amount of tax it pays.
But it still shelled out £2.3m in 2012/13 and, with the tax rate rising for the sixth year running to £72 a tonne, it faces a battle to avoid an even bigger bill this year.
The tax was introduced in 1996 and has risen sharply in recent years, costing local authorities £3billion since 2008, with successive governments accused of using it as a simple revenue raiser.
The council backed calls by the Local Government Association, which represents councils across the country, for the money to be returned to local authorities to invest in better recycling facilities.
Hounslow’s deputy council leader Colin Ellar said: "Our residents are keeping their side of the bargain by recycling more and with a new wheelie bin trial to be rolled out next month, we hope to further improve our recycling rate. If the government played fair over landfill tax, we would be able to use that money for local people."
Hounslow’s recycling rate last year was 34.98 per cent. Sending a tonne of waste to landfill costs £93, compared with £17 to recycle it.