A farmer, a fence and a show cause notice
A VIOLET Town farmer has been threatened with legal action by his local council after removing trees along his fence line.
Farmer Ken Sloan, whose property is surrounded by six kilometres of roads, was replacing part of his fence line that had fallen into disrepair when he cut back the trees on his property line.
Mr Sloan is now engaged in a legal battle with Strathbogie Shire which could end up in court.
The Victorian Farmers Federation is now calling on gov- ernment to reduce “green tape” and change the laws to make them more sensible for farmers and the environment.
ABC Rural first reported the story last week.
Mr Sloan “spoke to the council about removing the trees leaning across the fence and the tree limbs overhanging the fence”, according to the ABC’s report.
“Mr Sloan believes he had approval from council workers to do so, but now that approval has been reversed because he has been told he has broken environmental laws by killing trees — a claim he has denied.”
“The council has issued Mr Sloan with a ‘show cause’ letter demanding he explain why he should not be prosecuted for damaging native vegetation.”
Mr Sloan told the ABC he was devastated at the potential of litigation.
“I don’t sleep; I can’t sleep,” he said.
“They can’t tell us what we’ve done wrong apart from we’re removing trees.”
The saga could be a cautionary tale for those looking to clear away their fence line in Mansfield.
FENCE FURORE: An aggrieved Violet Town beef and sheep farmer could face legal action from Strathbogie Shire for removing trees on his property line.