CHANGES to waste and recycling centres in Monmouthshire will include a new permit scheme being introduced, while the possible full closure of at least one site will be decided by full council.

Councillors on Monmouthshire's strong communities select committee unanimously approved introducing a permit scheme for residents to use at the county's four sites in a bid to reduce out of county waste at a meeting on Thursday.

The plans will see a free permit issued to residents in the county, allowing them to use the sites at Five Lanes Caldicot, Llanfoist Abergavenny, Usk and Mitchel Troy Monmouth.

The meeting heard that the possibility of issuing permits to residents outside of the county for a charge is also being considered.

Carl Touhig, head of waste and street services at the council, said cross border waste has become an increasing issue as other authorities reduce provision while Monmouthshire offers a 'platinum service' in comparison.

However the council is looking to reduce costs at its four sites as its budget comes under increasing pressure.

Plans have been drawn up which could see day closures across the four sites or full site closures.

Issues with the site in Usk, as it requires significant investment to bring it up to "modern standards", mean it would be the most likely to be closed.

Cllr Laura Jones said she favoured introducing day closures rather than the full closure of any site.

"I fell very strongly that Usk and Mitchel Troy should not be closed," she said.

"I am very disappointed we have three options and every single one is to close Usk.

"It is a valued service and I don't think residents should have to travel (further)."

Cllr Louise Brown also said she favoured retaining all four sites, adding that a geographical spread meant people did not have to travel as far.

But Cllr Val Smith said closing sites on certain days would be 'confusing' for the public, and could lead to residents turning up to find sites closed.

"With regret I think we can't afford to keep Usk," she said.

"You've got to be practical."

Cllr Richard Roden said he had been contacted by several residents concerned about the possibility of further day closures at the Mitchel Troy site.

"It will cause severe anxiety issues if we see additional closing times at Mitchel Troy," he added.

Cllr Jane Pratt asked how much it would cost to bring the Usk site up to standard.

In response, Mr Touhig said he was unsure if it could ever be brought up to standard due to its layout and size.

But he said the council was continuing to invest in the site and appreciated it is "well-regarded" by the community.

The committee voted for the possible day or site closures to be decided at a full meeting of the council due to the significance of the issue.