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Application to Remove or Prune Trees & Vegetation

COVID-19 UPDATE – Thursday, 14 October 2021

In accordance with the NSW Government roadmap for reopening, we are pleased to welcome our community back to many of our Council facilities.

From Monday 18 October, the following will be in place.

Hornsby Aquatic and Leisure Centre

Council’s 50m outdoor pool is open for lap swimming, squad training and Aqua classes, with restrictions in place. Aqua classes will have a reduced timetable and class numbers.

The 17M and 25M indoor pools will open lap swimming and gentle exercise only. No Aqua classes or recreational swimming. The leisure pool is closed. The gym is open.

Operating hours will be extended to:

  • 6am-11am & 2pm-7pm, Monday to Friday
  • 8am-5pm, Saturday & Sunday

On entry, a pre-paid online booking for swimming, Aqua classes and gym sessions, and proof of full COVID vaccination for ages 16 and over, is required. Children under 16 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated parent or legal guardian aged 16 or over, who must also be swimming. No date/time changes allowed for any booking. For more information, including operating hours and how to book, see our Swimming page.

Galston Aquatic & Leisure Centre remains closed to the public in preparation for facility upgrades.

Hornsby Community Centres

Council’s community centres are available for regular hirer bookings.

One-off hires are also available, including for weddings and funerals.

All hirers must comply with the current Public Health Orders.

Capacity limits and other restrictions differ depending on the type of hire. See our Facilities & Venues page for details and to book.

Hornsby Shire Libraries

Pennant Hills, Galston and Berowra Libraries are open for loaning and returning, with reduced operating hours. Proof of full COVID vaccination for ages 16 and over will be required on entry. Children under 16 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated parent or legal guardian aged 16 or over. See library opening hours here.

Hornsby Library is closed for ongoing refurbishment works. A date for reopening will be communicated as soon as it is confirmed.

Thornleigh Brickpit

The Thornleigh Brickpit is open for indoor casual recreation such as table tennis, badminton and basketball hoops/practice. The currently reduced hours of 8.30am-9pm Monday to Friday and 9am-9pm, Saturday to Sunday will return to normal from Monday 18 October.

Group numbers are capped at 20, including spectators. Please note community sport, such as a game of basketball, is not yet permitted.

Proof of full COVID vaccination for ages 16 and over is required on entry. Children under 16 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated parent or legal guardian aged 16 or over.

Bookings essential.

Thornleigh Community Recycling Centre

The Thornleigh Community Recycling Centre is open to all visitors, including those from other local government areas. See opening times and COVIDSafe conditions of entry.

All other services

Council is endeavouring to provide as many services in the field as possible, where they are in line with the Public Health Orders. Consequently, current inspections or assessments undertaken by our Council Officers will be contactless where possible.

These measures are to keep our community and our staff safe during this current outbreak but we are still here for you. Please be assured that we will respond to emergency callouts. And when we cannot respond face-face, we will endeavour to find a way to assist in a COVID-safe way wherever possible.

Our Customer Service Centre is closed to public access, but our team can be reached on 9847 6666 and online as usual and we will respond during normal business hours.

Many of our services are available online, including lodgement of Development Applications, and our Duty Planning Officer is available for enquiries on 9847 6760 (8.30am-5pm).

Further information on the current restrictions is available on the NSW Government website.

We are constantly monitoring this evolving situation and will keep you updated here, on Facebook and in our newsletters with any changes.

If you wish to undertake tree or vegetation works an application form needs to be completed and lodged either in person with the Council customer service team or on line.  For applications to be processed, the application must have the endorsement of the property owner or their agent where the tree is located.  Fees do apply to permit applications and payment needs to accompany the application form. The results of the application will be sent to the owner of the tree not the applicant.

A development application is required for requests to prune or remove trees or vegetation located within a Heritage Item or land within a Heritage Conservation Area where the works are considered to be major.

Where trees or vegetation works are contrary to a development consent that requires trees to be retained a section 96 application will be required.

Apply online

Online applications and payment by credit card are available through Council's Online Services Portal.

Applying in person or sending via mail

Download an application form

Completed application forms can be can be lodged by returning the completed form together with payment by:

  • In Person: Council's Administration Building 296 Peats Ferry Road, Hornsby
  • Mail: Hornsby Shire Council PO Box 37, HORNSBY  NSW 1630.

Applications received via the mail can only include payment of the relevant application fee by cheque only.

Inspection Fees

There is a fee for the inspection of tree/s on private property. Download Council's Tree Inspection Fees - 97kb.

Processing Your Application

Following the receipt of your application, one of Council's qualified arborists will inspect your tree/s and conduct a site inspection to assess the health of the tree and the merits of the application before a determination can be made.

Some of the assessment factors taken into account include:

  • Potential risk of injury
  • Potential risk of damage to buildings and structures
  • The trees health, growth potential and structural soundness
  • Whether the tree is visually or culturally significant
  • Whether the tree forms part of green corridor, remnant species and provides native habitat.

To assist Councils assessment you may wish to include additional information with the application such as:

  • Proof of damage caused by a tree
  • A tree report on the condition of the tree from an AQF5 qualified arborist (Diploma in Arboriculture). Tree reports must be compliant with Council's Guidelines for Arboricultural Impact Assessment.
  • A building report from a structural engineer
  • A pest inspection report.

Applications will be processed in 28 working days and the owner will be advised of this determination in writing. If you are dissatisfied with a decision, Section 12 of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Vegetation in Non-Rural Areas) 2017 [NSW] gives you the right to appeal to the Land and Environment Court within 3 months after the date on which you receive the Determination.

Refunds

In instances where applications are submitted for trees that are exempt from requiring permission under Council's DCP, Council may consider to refund part of the application fee. However, if an officer has attended site and carried out an inspection, Council will retain as a processing fee of $100.

Where applications are submitted for trees that are exempt due to the 10/50 entitlements, the application fee will not be refunded if the owner is seeking Councils confirmation that they have access to the 10/50 entitlement. Please note that it is the property owner's responsibility to make the necessary checks to determine if the 10/50 entitlement applies to their property.

How can I appeal against a Council decision on my application?

If you are dissatisfied with a decision Section 12 of the State Environmental Planning Policy (Vegetation in Non-Rural Areas) 2017 [NSW] gives you the right to appeal to the Land and Environment Court within 3 months after the date on which you receive the Determination.

Enquiries about this process should be addressed to the Registrar of the Court.