Wednesday 13th Nov, 11:00am
Tauranga City Council
AVOID CURVE BALLS - TREE PROTECTION
I would like to share the learning's of two cases where Tauranga City Council successfully achieved a positive environmental outcome without going to court for a formal prosecution. In both cases we secured the reinstatement of the vegetation or a monetary bond to provide security for the value of the trees over a fixed period while the trees recovered.
Case number 1
A landowner cleared a total of 1244 square metres vegetation on his property and neighbouring properties, which was planted as part of mitigation for development, and which was protected by a consent notice in accordance with section 221 of the RMA. When investigating the state of mind of the offender during the investigation, Council discovered that, the offender was terminally ill, and had less than 12 months to live. When assessing the public good, i.e. to follow through with a prosecuting on terminally offender, - Council considered that the outcome for the community would be greater if a diversion agreement was secured between the offender and Council rather than a court prosecution. This agreement secured monies towards council legal fees and a requirement for replanting and maintenance across the three properties.
Case number 2
A large corporate involved in a major infrastructure project, damaged the root zone of five park trees. The activities were been undertaken in accordance with a resource consent, however the tree protection that was implemented as part of the consent was not followed which resulted in significant damage occurring to the root zone of 5 park trees. The leverage of an abatement notice was used in return for receiving a monetary bank bond equal to the value of the tree group approximately $30,000. A bond would be triggered if the tree went into to significant decline
Environmental Monitoring Officer, Tauranga City Council
I am an Environmental Monitoring Officer working at Tauranga City Council for the past 4 years, previous to this I worked for South Waikato District Council for 12 years. I have completed a Masters in Environmental Management.