Thiruvananthapuram: The state government has framed laws making it mandatory for local bodies to collect user fees from households, institutions, street vendors, traders and organisers of public events for the disposal of plastic waste. User fees can be charged just like taxes and dues.
The rules are intended to facilitate storing of plastic waste near the source itself and then maintaining and disposing them scientifically.
The fees for each home would range from Rs 20 to Rs 200 per month. The fees should be paid by each flat/house in apartments and residential areas.
The fees for shops, establishments, street vendors, and catering units will vary depending on the amount of waste generated. The fees for materials like plastic cover would be Rs 10–20 per 100 grams. For other plastic waste, a fee of up to Rs 10 per 100 grams will be charged.
The basic user fee for those who organise events with more than 100 people will be Rs.250.
The government has issued the rules as ‘Local Plastic Waste Management By-laws’. These will now come into effect after the governing body of all local bodies hold a meeting and approve and notify them. Prior to the notification, each institution will give 30 days for people to give their views and objections to the rules.
Work permit can be revoked
The local body secretary can collect a fine of Rs 10,000 for violation of the rules for the first time, Rs 25,000 for the second time and Rs 50,000 for the third time. In case of violation for the fourth time, the local body can, in case of an establishment, revoke the work permit for a fixed period.
Receipt with stamp of local body
Local bodies should entrust Haritha Karma Sena/agency the task of collecting, removing, storing, treating and disposing of plastic waste. They will take the waste to the collection centres and material recovery centres. The user fee should be collected by issuing a receipt that will have the stamp of the local authority.
Shops should display board
Homes, establishments and shops should clean, dry and sort plastic waste that cannot be recycled and hand it over to an approved Haritha Karma Sena or agency. Business entities should display a board saying plastic covers and carry bags will not be sold.