An increase in the number of tree poisonings in Maroondah has prompted Council to warn of the consequences of committing the offence.
Mayor of Maroondah Councillor Alex Makin said poisoning trees was an offence under the Planning and Environment Act (1987) and Council would pursue any cases to the fullest extent of the law.
“Council can issue fines in relation to tree poisonings, and a direction will be made to replant with advanced trees, adding to the offence costs,” Cr Makin said.
“If you need to remove a tree on your property it’s a requirement that you contact Council to discuss your plans first. Poisoning is definitely the wrong way to go about things,” Cr Makin said.
“We’ve seen around 40 trees poisoned in the past year, up from less than 10 the previous year, and this is unacceptable,” Cr Makin said.
“Under the Maroondah Planning Scheme, a planning permit is required for removal of canopy trees or vegetation within a Significant Landscape Overlay area, or for the removal of any native vegetation in a Vegetation Protection Overlay area,” Cr Makin said.
“A canopy tree is any tree with a height of more than five metres or with a single trunk circumference greater than half a metre,” Cr Makin said.
“If people have a tree that they are concerned about but aren’t sure of their requirements then the best option is to call or visit Council and talk through your concerns with one of our officers. They deal with these issues everyday so they are in the best position to give you advice about the trees and your legal obligations,” Cr Makin said.
“One of Maroondah’s greatest assets is our green canopy and it is important to protect the trees so that future generations can enjoy the same outlook that we have today,” Cr Makin said.
Council officers conduct random checks at building sites to ensure works are being undertaken as outlined in planning permits. People or organisations involved in instances of tree poisoning will be fined and ordered to plant replacement trees.
“Residents are encouraged to phone Council on 1300 88 22 33 if they are aware of the suspect removal of trees in Maroondah. This often provides Council with valuable information to pursue cases of tree poisonings,” Cr Makin said.
For more information about tree removal in Maroondah visit www.maroondah.vic.gov.au/TreeRemoval.aspx
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