Wingecarribee Shire Councillors last night recommended that no further action be taken against the persons responsible for the alleged destruction of trees in Cunningham Park, Sutton Forest.
“Council has explored all legal options and it is with great regret that that a decision has been made to take no further action,” said Council’s General Manager, Jason Gordon.
“Unfortunately our external legal advice suggests further action may prove inconclusive and a successful prosecution is not guaranteed. This comes on top of the fact that pursuing the matter may result in costly legal fees with which we have no assurance in recovering.”
“The decision to not proceed with legal action was not taken lightly and we pressed this matter with the greatest force with both Police and our own legal advisors.“
“By no means has Council ever condoned this behaviour,” Mr Gordon said.
The decision to drop the case comes after Police were unwilling to lay charges.
“As a result of this incident Council will immediately conduct a full review of its engagement of volunteers and instigate Code of Conduct training for all community volunteers who work under our authority.”
Council reminds all residents that it is an offence under the Local Government Act to negligently or wilfully injure, damage or remove any plant, animal, soil or rock in a public place. If you are proven responsible for such an act, Council will prosecute, with fines of up to $2,200 possible.