Vandal targets Sale’s trees

POLICE are appealing for public information after 25 trees were vandalised in Sale.

Wellington Shire Council reported 16 trees had been cut down in King George Ave (east side), one tree in Kylie Court, two trees in Dryden Court, two trees in Jackson Avenue, three trees in Chester St and one tree in Chalmer Court.

It is believed the vandalism happened sometime between November 6 and 8.

Some trees will have to be replanted, with trees in Dryden Court, Jackson Avenue and Chalmer Court unlikely to recover.

Council estimated those responsible caused about $8500 in damage, including the replacement, removal, wages and watering for the next three years and clean up.

Because the trees had reached maturity, they would have only needed minimal maintenance from now on, compared to the first three years.

Council deputy mayor Bob Wenger said it was extremely disappointing.

“Council staff spend a lot of time working and managing the grounds all around the shire and to have something like this especially the amount of trees that have been done in one setting it is really disappointing and it is frustrating,” Mr Wenger said.

“At this stage, the amount of damage that’s been done, we don’t know whether they’re going to die straight away or not so chances are they’ll all be removed and replaced with fresh trees but even then it’s going to take another three years before they’re up and running to the height they are now.

“It’s going to cost approximately $8500 that was the initial cost of putting them in the ground and watering for the three years and if we have to replace the trees as they are now, minimum cost is at least $200 per tree.”

Sale police Leading Senior Constable Mike Cook said the offender or offenders faced the possibility of criminal damage charges because of the extent of the damage.

He urged anyone with information to phone Sale police on 5142 2200 or to remain anonymous phone Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000