Veg­e­ta­tion van­dal­ism

Melville Times - - Front Page - Bryce Luff

THE wife of a vo­cal Al­fred Cove Ac­tion Group (ACAG) mem­ber op­posed to the pro­posed wave park es­caped with a cau­tion af­ter dam­ag­ing veg­e­ta­tion in At­tadale.

The De­part­ment of Bio­di­ver­sity, Con­ser­va­tion and At­trac­tions (DBCA) in­ves­ti­gated af­ter wit­nesses re­ported see­ing He­len Maynier climb a fence be­fore cut­ting down and spray­ing plants be­tween her unit com­plex and the river. In an email to the City of Melville, DBCA said it held an in­for­mal interview with the “nom­i­nated per­son of in­ter­est”, Mrs Maynier.

“A num­ber of ad­mis­sions were ob­tained and sub­se­quently a writ­ten cau­tion was is­sued for some da­m­age to the fore­shore veg­e­ta­tion,” the email read.

Un­der Swan and Can­ning River Man­age­ment Reg­u­la­tions, dam­ag­ing veg­e­ta­tion car­ries a max­i­mum $5000 penalty. DBCA said cau­tions were com­mon but an ad­mis­sion helped Mrs Maynier avoid a fine.

David Maynier, an ACAG con­vener, said his wife re­moved a sin­gle “knee-high plant” af­ter be­ing told by a neigh­bour it was an in­va­sive weed.

He said the mo­tive was not to im­prove their views of the river.

“I said if there was a fine to pay or com­mu­nity ser­vice, we’d do it,” he said.

“We’re not try­ing to get out of it at all.”

Mr Maynier said he had writ­ten to the De­part­ment of Parks and Wildlife – now un­der the DBCA um­brella – in 2016, con­cerned by in­va­sive weeds.

Wave Park Group (WPG) chair­man An­drew Ross de­scribed Mrs Maynier’s ac­tions at the re­serve as “re­mark­able in its hypocrisy”, con­sid­er­ing ACAG’s view of the en­vi­ron­men­tal risks as­so­ci­ated with WPG’s $25 mil­lion pro­posal.

“This is the same area ACAG and the Mayniers con­tin­u­ously re­fer to as be­ing a spe­cial, unique place and sup­pos­edly dear to them and their group of sup­port­ers,” he said.

Veg­e­ta­tion at the At­tadale fore­shore.

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