Agreement reached on sale of recycle facility

Thursday 15 September, 2022

Tamworth Regional Council (Council) and Challenge Community Services (Challenge) have been involved in negotiations for over 12 months regarding Council purchasing the site owned and operated by Challenge adjacent to the Forest Road Landfill.
Throughout the negotiations the priorities for both parties have been: the ongoing employment opportunities for Challenge staff and people with disability; the continued delivery of recycling services for the Tamworth community; ongoing financial sustainability for both parties; and preserve and build on a positive collaborative relationship between parties.

At the ordinary Council meeting on Tuesday 9 August, 2022 Council agreed to purchase the land, including all plant and equipment on site for an undisclosed fee.
From 1 December, 2022 Council will own the land and operate the existing facility.

This acquisition will allow Council to enhance the facilities as required, securing the short, medium and long-term operations and feasibility of recycling services for the Tamworth region at the site. Stringent regulations and requirements are required for resource recovery facilities and this agreement represents good future planning for Council and rate-payers.

Tamworth Region Mayor Russell Webb said it took a while to reach this outcome but it is the most suitable for all involved.

“Challenge has provided our community with excellent services at the recycling facility for three decades. There were many possibilities discussed during the negotiations over some time. We will continue to work with Challenge and continue to build on the strong relationship we have.”
Challenge CEO, Stephen Doley, said Challenge and Council have committed to working together to identify future partnership opportunities that provide employment for people with disability, including potential in the recycling space.
“We are extremely proud of the 30-year contribution Challenge Recycling has made to the Tamworth community and to the many that have worked at the site over this period.

“We have held an information session with staff and families this week to update them on this agreement, what we will be doing during the transition period and the opportunities after December 1. This also includes one-on-one sessions with staff and families.
“While it signifies the end of an era, this agreement will enable Challenge to invest in many more employment opportunities for people with disability, meaningful opportunities that we hope will continue to benefit the community for another 30 years,” Mr Doley said.
Council and Challenge will continue to work in partnership to deliver future initiatives with a strong community benefit.

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