Approval granted to restrict road access following illegal dumping

Grant District Council will allow Green Triangle Forest Products (GTFP) to erect a structure across one end of Mulwala Road, Compton, off the back of complaints of trespassing and illegal rubbish dumping. The council was approached by the company due to the “significant challenges” it faces in minimising undesirable behaviour in its plantation bordering Mulwala Road.

This includes trespassing four-wheel drives and motorbikes, illegal rubbish dumping, illegal firewood collection, shooting and campfires. While the use of surveillance cameras had been used in an attempt to identify perpetrators, GTFP said it had been largely unsuccessful and problematic.

In an effort to minimise such activities, the company sought permission from the council to close the southern end of Mulwala Road, with plans to also restrict access to the plantation via Mitchell Road.

Harvesting manager Mark Wells wrote in a letter to council, there was “no intent to stop legitimate and acceptable passive plantation use”. This included bush walking, bird watching and push-bike riding. Mr Wells added the company would continue to ensure “sufficient access to the area in the event of a fire”.

Cr Gillian Clayfield moved the council grant GTFP a permit to alter the public road by placing a structure at the end of Mulwala Road with a permit period of 20 years. Council agreed the permit be given at no cost. However, additional conditions would see the company solely responsible for all costs associated with the installation of suitable structures across the road and for the removal of such structures at the expiration of the permit period.

The business would also be solely responsible for all maintenance and upkeep and for ensuring the structures were safe and highly visible to the public. Council will retain the right to require GTFP to remove, change, repair or improve any part of the structures at any time during the permit period.

It comes after community consultation was sought by GTFP which found none of the residents of Mulwala Road appeared to be against the proposal.

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