Iluka tree “slaughter”

Ed, It appears that Clarence Valley Council is once again making up the rules as it goes along. Three weeks ago, every tree on the land at the corner of Owen and Spenser Streets at Iluka was slaughtered, including six mature palms which were on council land. A council employee confirmed, after a lengthy search, that no development application has been submitted, advertised or posted with regard to the future of this site. Another CVC spokesperson stated that the removal of the huge gum tree adjacent to the Charles Lane boundary was because of the danger it presented to the public.  This is absolute garbage. This tree was in no way dangerous – my wife and I walk this lane every day and have never seen a branch that has fallen from this tree. And why were the palms removed? Again, a CVC spokesperson stated that it was because they were “not natives”. So, is it council’s policy to remove every tree in Iluka that is on council land and which is not a “native”? Or maybe not just Iluka but the entire Clarence Valley? Let’s face it they have made a good start at Maclean! If a D.A. is eventually lodged, what happens if it is rejected/declined/refused? We will have lost all these years of tree growth for absolutely no reason. And why were they removed in the first place? Can’t architects and engineers design a development that is built around natural vegetation? Why was it that Google Maps showed the site in question as “Iluka Resort & Spa” when no D.A. has even been submitted? Or has someone in council given pre-approval to the developers that prompted them to start advertising their project. In the past 12 month we have seen six large gum trees hacked to the ground on properties backing on to Charles Lane. When was this “scorched earth” policy announced or voted on by the CVC? When will it stop? If the Council thinks it can ruin Iluka without consultation, they had better be prepared for the community backlash which will be loud and long. We came here for the lifestyle and refuse to see it eroded by non-thinking officials whose only interest is the almighty dollar. Chris Richards, Iluka