6 May 2019

New Eurobodalla tree-clearing rules up for comment

| Ian Campbell
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Draft updates to documents governing tree clearing on non-rural land in the Eurobodalla are available for public comment from May 8' Photo: ESC.

Draft updates to documents governing tree clearing on non-rural land in the Eurobodalla are available for public comment from May 8. Photo: ESC.

Tree removal is always a hot topic and Eurobodalla Shire Council is after community feedback on changes to two relevant documents on the issue.

At Tuesday’s Council, it was agreed to put on public exhibition draft amendments to the Residential Zone Development Control Plan for 28 days from this Wednesday – May 8.

Council’s Director of Planning Lindsay Usher says the amendments are needed to rectify unintended consequences arising from the NSW Government’s 2017 land-management and biodiversity reforms.

“Changes in NSW legislation mean tree-management measures no longer apply to non-rural land in the Eurobodalla, resulting in inconsistencies in assessment and approval requirements for tree clearing across the shire,” Mr Usher says.

Council says the amendments would reinstate control measures to non-rural land zoned E2-Environmental Conservation, E4-Environmental Living, R5-Large Lot Residential, and RE1-Public Recreation similar to those prior to the 2017 reforms.

At the meeting, Councillors also endorsed concurrent amendments to the Tree Preservation Code.

Mr Usher says updating the code will give landholders more certainty around the requirements for the removal of undesired vegetation and enable clearing to maintain rural infrastructure appropriate to lifestyle blocks.

“A Council permit helps protect landowners from prosecution for unintentional illegal clearing,” he says.

“The amendments bring us back to a consistent approach to the removal of vegetation on non-rural land.

“They also help ensure the visual amenity, biodiversity resilience and tourism appeal of trees in Eurobodalla’s non-rural landscape is protected against unauthorised clearing and pruning on public land.

“That’s important because the incremental nature of canopy loss often means changes go largely unnoticed, with reduced vegetation becoming the new normal.”

Draft amendments to the Residential Zone Development Control Plan will be open for comment from May 8 for 28 days.

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Trees should not grew close to the house for safety and dropping leaves into gutters.
Shade is also a serious consideration. Shade over a clothesline in particular. Shade in summer is good, shade in winter is bad. Strong wind blowing branches through windows is costly. Trees are a good wind break until they fall on a house. Roots breaking driveways and causing a trip hazzard, and lifting house footings, and damaging sewer pipes must be considered. Solar panels need sun and in the near future all available sun will be needed to charge electric cars. Neighbours may need to enter another’s property to clear nuisance folate. A pleasant view is of high priority to many people and must be respected to avoid a “trapped in” feeling. Trees also attract lightening. Much to consider.
Many parts of the world have towns and cities with no trees and the people still live.

Sandra Doyle11:30 am 05 May 19

I love trees but the rubbish which has been allowed to accumulate under the trees and the small rubbish trees which have been allowed to grow are spoiling the tourist attraction. I have also seen a number of rabbits ( despite the poisoning sessions) and rats and I don’t mean bush rats. The area desperately needs cleaning out.

Peter Johnsen11:11 am 05 May 19

Neighbours should be responsible for their trees that overhang onto my property.

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