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Permit needed for residential burn offs as fire restrictions begin in Mitchell Shire

2 October 2017

Fire restrictions have begun in Mitchell Shire, meaning anyone wishing to burn off on a residential property needs a permit from Council.

The fire restrictions began on 1 October 2017 and continue until the CFA Fire Danger Period is declared, which usually occurs later this month.

Once the CFA Fire Danger Period is declared, burning off permits will not be issued.

Permits are now needed for residential, Urban Growth areas less than 0.4 hectares (1 acre) and semi-rural areas to burn a windrow, stump, log or vegetation with a diameter greater than 75mm.

A windrow is any combustible or inflammable material, including garden refuse, tree matter and household rubbish (unless listed as not allowed) that is stored in an area exceeding 2 cubic metres.

However, there are other ways of reducing fuel around properties, with residents able to drop off green waste at Council’s Resource Recovery Centres in Broadford, Pyalong, Seymour and Wallan for free during weekends in November (November 4-5, 11-12, 18-19 and 25-26).

Green waste can be dropped off at the centres all year round (fees apply – except on the weekends in November outlined above).

Natural wood and tree branches (under 300mm diameter) and grass clippings will need to be sorted from non-green waste items before arrival and green waste must be free of declared noxious weeds, so it can be reused as mulch.

Any loads containing items other than green waste will be charged accordingly.

For more information on green waste, please click HERE.

Mitchell Shire Mayor Rhonda Sanderson said it was important residents applied for a permit if they still needed to burn off to ensure community safety.

“Fire restrictions are in place for a reason and that is to protect our community,” Cr Sanderson said.

“This time of year is prone to warm temperatures and high winds and the last thing we want is for a burn off to get out of control and spread, creating a larger fire.

“If people flout the law and burn off without a permit, they also risk some fairly hefty infringement penalties, with a maximum fine of $1000 for those caught doing the wrong thing.”

Cr Sanderson said the fire restrictions were a timely reminder for people to get their properties in order ahead of the fire season.

“Council encourages people to take some simple measures such as keeping grass trimmed below 200mm, raking up leaves and removing overhanging branches and leaf litter from roofs and gutters to ensure their homes are best prepared for the upcoming fire season.”

Council will begin conducting property inspections from mid-October.

To apply for a permit to burn off during Council’s fire restriction period, click HERE or drop in to a Customer and Library Service Centre in Broadford, Kilmore, Seymour or Wallan.

For more fire information, please visit the Mitchell Shire Council Fire Information page on Facebook.