MITCHELL Shire Council has copped a $7773 fine from the Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA) for breaching licence conditions for the Mitchell landfill at Hilldene.
EPA North East Manager Emma Knights said the offence involved failure to conduct an environmental audit of the landfill.
“As part of its licence conditions, the council is required to have the landfill operation periodically and independently assessed by an environmental auditor, to give the community confidence that the land filling activities are not harming the environment around the site,” Ms Knights said.
“Licence holders have obligations to operate within EPA licence conditions and when that doesn’t happen, they must be held to account to ensure community and environment are not affected,” she said.
The audit should have been conducted by September 1 last year.
Mitchell Shire Mayor, Cr Rhonda Sanderson commenting on the fine and said that while it was unfortunate the audit was not submitted to the EPA on time, council had actually conducted the audit, submitted it to the EPA and is working through the recommendations.
The mayor added that there had been no risk to the community or environment as a result of the audit delay.