City of Bayswater stays rooted to tough tree stance

The City of Bayswater wants to avoid vandalism of any kind to its trees.
The City of Bayswater wants to avoid vandalism of any kind to its trees.

THE City of Bayswater will keep its tough stance against tree vandalism, despite residents raising concerns the 3m x 3m signs implied they were responsible for the damage.

After two tree poisonings in April last year, the council decided to erect the signs where unauthorised pruning, vandalism, poisoning or removal of vegetation occurred on City of Bayswater owned or managed land for two years.

The signs are aimed at deterring vandals and encouraging residents to contact the City to if they see suspicious behaviour.

Deputy Mayor Stephanie Coates put forward a motion at this week’s council meeting to review its public reserves policy, to minimise the potential impact on innocent parties who live in the area of the vandalised trees.

She said she was contacted by residents who live near a 3m x 3m sign on Peninsula Road in Maylands who had received negative comments from the public.

Cr Coates said when the residents sat at the front of their house people walk past and shake their heads.

Councillor Brent Fleeton said the policy said: “clearly impacts a lot of people who don’t deserve it.”

However, Councillor Chris Cornish said while he had sympathy for the residents, he would not vote to see the positive work of the tree policy undone.

Councillor Dan Bull said Council needed to hold firm on the policy because the signs acted as a deterrent.

“It would be fantastic if in two years time, all signs were pulled down and no more put up,” he said.

The motion was lost and the tree policy will stay in place.

A sign can be removed before the end of two years if a resident applies to the City to replace the vandalised vegetation.

The City of Bayswater has the fourth lowest tree canopy in Perth.