Statement from Mayor Brian Little
Council is extremely disappointed and disgusted at two deliberate acts of vandalism targeting six mature Chinese elm trees in Aquatic Place, Glen Waverley.
These are significant and valuable community assets, around 20 years old, and in good health. The trees form a well-established avenue through the street and are highly valued by the local community for their shade and the beauty they bring to the street.
Council’s tree amenity valuation policy values the trees at around $9,000 each with a collective value of $55,900.
The trees were first targeted on 29 September when the first attempt to poison the trees was made. Soil was scraped from the base of each tree and diesel poured into the base. A second incident occurred the next day, 30 September, with diesel again poured into the tree base.
Council has undertaken mitigation works by flushing out the diesel. The trees are being monitored and Victoria Police have been advised.
Significant penalties apply as these acts of vandalism constitute Criminal Damage under the Crimes Act. The penalty is a maximum 10 years imprisonment or a fine of up to $218,000.
Council will not hesitate to strongly advocate and support Victoria Police to prosecute anyone found to be deliberately damaging trees in this way. Anyone who witnessed any suspicious behaviour around the trees on 29 and 30 September please contact 1800 333 000.
Media Contact: Jo Robertson 0418 391 979 or email Joanne.Robertson@monash.vic.gov.au