Two proposed changes concern me – briefly:
1. Cat numbers and the absence of any curfew.
Research evidence on the ‘killing capacity’ of domestic cats clearly demonstrates their dreadful impact on native wildlife. We are in the sixth great extinction and the reduction in cat numbers from 4 to 2 will have minimal effect on this destruction.
During the lead-up consultation period I, and I know of several others, argued for curfews for cats. Council has regulations for dogs (on/off leash) so why not curfews for cats?
If cats were contained in secure runs the numbers becomes less of an issue – while I would prefer a 24-hour curfew I understand this might not be possible and would accept a curfew from an hour before sunset to an hour after sunrise. In making the 4 to 2 reduction recommendation it seems that Council is taking the easy way out of this vexed issue – please take a strong stand for the environment.
2. Planting on roadsides.
I see that detailed guidelines will be drawn up after LL #2 is passed – which makes comment here more difficult.
Can I appeal for (i) further consultation on this matter; and (ii) simple, easy to apply, guidelines that put general tidiness, fire risk and obstruction, including vision, as the criteria rather than detailed species, height and location requirements. The latter will only promote a uniform blandness into the character of our streetscapes. For those of us who maintain ‘the nature strip’ in good condition it ranks second only to the great Aussie backyard – please don’t turn it into a focus of bureaucratic conflict between homeowners and Council.