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Money in the bag for anonymous ratepayer

YOU would think that after 36 years in local government, City of Swan CEO Mike Foley would have seen it all.

However, in a bizarre set of circumstances, even Mr Foley was surprised when City of Swan staff managed to recover a bag containing $100,000 from a waste disposal truck for a ratepayer who wishes to remain anonymous.

The ratepayer called the City’s customer service centre in late July and proceeded to tell shocked staff that a bag containing a substantial amount of money had been accidentally thrown into a refuse bin by his partner.

To make matters worse, the bin had been emptied that morning.

The City’s customer services team immediately notified the waste services team, who managed to stop the refuse truck driver in his tracks before he reached the tip.

The driver quickly returned to the City’s waste depot, where a team of staff gathered to empty the entire truck and sift through piles of rubbish for more than an hour.

Unable to locate the lost money, staff loaded the rubbish back into the truck, until the resident arrived to revive the search.

Along with the hopeful resident, staff emptied the truck for a second time and managed to recover the bag and the $100,000.

Mr Foley said he had never come across anything so remarkable.

“The City often receives requests to find valuable items lost in the trash – in the past we’ve received reports of lost wedding rings, war medals, purses and phones,” he said.

“It’s not every day that $100,000 is found in a pile of rubbish; in fact, this is the only reported lost valuable we’ve ever recovered from refuse.

“To isolate the truck carrying the lost money and notify the driver in time is quite a remarkable feat, and a testament to the hard work of our staff.

“I’m extremely proud of the team who went above and beyond to help this resident in an extremely unfamiliar situation.”

The resident, who wishes to keep their identity anonymous, was very grateful for the efforts of all staff involved.

About Liam Ducey

Liam Ducey is an experienced journalist, having worked in print media in Kalgoorlie, Esperance, Port Hedland, Bunbury and across the metropolitan area, as well as online for several Fairfax Media mastheads. His reporting has seen him awarded the 2013 Clubs WA award for Best Club Media Story in 2013 and the Western Australian Football Commission Umpiring Media Award in 2014, and he's a finalist in three categories of the 2018 WA Media Awards. He's recently had a baby girl, Emilia, with his wife Roselyn and has lost all concept of time and sleep.

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