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Local Labour politicians come up with three options to save Ilkley tip

Ilkley's town Mayor and the area's former Labour MP have put forward three options for keeping the Golden Butts Household Waste and Recycling Centre open.

The facility is due to close on Sunday (31st March) as part of cuts by Bradford Council.

But now Ilkley Town Council is looking into whether it can play a role in keeping the site open in some form.

The town Mayor, Karl Milner, has begun talks with the council - and visited the site together with former MP and Labour parliamentary candidate John Grogan (pictured).

It's understood an an initial discussion has been held between the Mayor and a senior officer at Bradford Council, with a further call planned for this week.

An Ilkley Town Council meeting will be held on Monday 8th April and is set to include discussion on the Golden Butts HWRC.

Mr Milner and Mr Grogan have put forward three possible solutions, which they say need to be explored.

The first is increasing the Ilkley Town Council precept on council tax bills in order to cover the costs of keeping the tip open. An online petition calling for this has already received the support of more than 1,700 signatories.

The second option is that the site could be bought or leased by Ilkley Town Council and a private operator asked to provide a service. The operator might be allowed to levy a charge per use - something councils are not legally allowed to do. At the end of the contract the council would have the option of bringing back the service into public hands.

The third option is to sell the site to a private operator, with a covenant on its continued use as a waste and recycling centre.

The Mayor and Mr Grogan also have separately received assurances the that the workforce at the tip will be briefed this week on their future and options for redeployment elsewhere in the waste service discussed. They have also expressed the hope that the discussions between Bradford and Leeds Councils on whether Ilkley residents will be allowed to use the Ellar Ghyll site at Otley (if only for a short period ahead) be brought to a conclusion as soon as possible. 

John Grogan told us: "This is not going to be easy and there is no guarantee of success but at least there is the will from all concerned to try. Continuing cross-party support and expertise will be essential if there is to be any chance of progress."

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