Rangers are Wingecarribee Shire Council officers who are responsible for:
- Public Safety
- Responding to environmental incidents (air, land, water & noise)
- Animal management
- Roads and traffic compliance
- Implementation of Councils policies, legislation & regulations
Acting on complaints
In response to a recent spate of unauthorised landfill and vegetation removal incidents across the Shire, Wingecarribee Shire Council is advising residents to be aware of the implications of accepting free landfill.
Don't Illegally Clear or Fill Your Land
Council has been notified of businesses advertising “free clean fill” to Wingecarribee residents. Residents should be aware that this type of “free clean fill” is generally construction waste containing asbestos, building debris and heavy metal contaminants. Accepting fill of this type can lead to hundreds of thousands of dollars’ in clean-up costs, and in most instances the responsibility of this stays with the Landowner.
NSW EPA Protecting the Community and Our Environment
Understand the Consequences
Council will initiate action against those person/parties, including landowners, responsible for all instances where unauthorised land-use activities are undertaken or where land-use activities are undertaken contrary to development consent. This may include, issuing a penalty notice or taking legal action dependent on the extent of environmental damage caused and the nature of the offence. Under the relevant planning and environmental protection legislation the penalties for unauthorised or non-complying land-use activities can range up to $5 million including further penalties for each day the offence continues where the matter is taken before a Court.
Not Without Permission
Residents are reminded that development consent from Council is generally required for the removal of native vegetation and individual trees, as well as works associated with land-filling, earth moving and regrading. If you are considering undertaking any form of development, it is important that you contact Council to discuss your need to obtain prior approval.
Don't Risk the Environment
Wingecarribee is a unique natural area with high conservation significance and is home to several threatened species, including Koalas and Glossy Black Cockatoos, is part of the regionally significant Great Western Wildlife Corridor and is the source of Sydney’s drinking water.
Unauthorised land-filling, associated earthworks and the illegal removal of native vegetation have the potential to cause significant environmental damage and could result in harm to a range of threatened species and their habitat.
Abandoning a vehicle is an offence under the Impounding Act 1993. It detracts from the local amenity of the Highlands and may cause an unsafe situation or public inconvenience.
Report a Vehicle
To report a vehicle you think has been abandoned (including cars, caravans and trailers), contact:
Police Assistance Line
Telephone: 131 444
The Police Assistance Line operates 24hrs a day, 7 days a week.
Council is unable to remove an abandoned vehicle until the NSW Police have confirmed that the vehicle has not been stolen or is otherwise of interest to them.
Once the NSW Police have confirmed that the vehicle is not of interest to them and is in fact abandoned, they will notify Wingecarribee Shire Council.
The registration status of a vehicle is not indicative that an owner has abandoned the motor vehicle and registration is not a consideration within the provisions of the Act. However, it is an offence to ‘Stand Unregistered Vehicle on Public Street’. This offence is enforced by NSW Police and Council does not have the authorisation to enforce or issue a penalty notice. Information regarding the enforcement of unregistered vehicles by the NSW Police may be obtained by contacting the Police Assistance Line on 131 444.
The investigation to determine if a vehicle is abandoned is carried out under the Impounding Act 1993.
Once Council has been notified by NSW Police, Council's Rangers can then investigate abandoned vehicles in the Shire. This includes road related areas as defined under the Road Rules 2008, and includes an area that is not a road and that is open to or used by the public for driving, riding or parking vehicles.
If the vehicle is abandoned within an enclosed strata property, the matter should be resolved under the Strata Schemes Management Act 1996 and the Community Land Management Act 1989.
Abandoned vehicles located on private land need to be managed by the land owner and occupier of the premises.
When investigating a suspected abandoned vehicle, Council places a bright yellow sticker on the vehicle to signify that it is under Council investigation and provide the owner notice that the vehicle may be impounded if not removed.
Only in case of absolute emergency (i.e. hazard to public safety) can this process change.
Penalties & Fees
Failure to comply with the Impounding Act 1993 can result in a penalty infringement notice being imposed on a person who abandons a motor vehicle in a public place.
Fees also apply for reclaiming an impounded vehicle, including release, transport and daily storage fees.
To enquire as to whether your vehicle has been impounded by Council, contact:
Telephone: 02 4868 0888
If you have a vehicle that you no longer need or wish to keep and are unable to sell the vehicle, contact a scrap metal dealer. In most cases, the scrap metal dealer will collect the vehicle at no cost.
Selling a Vehicle
When you sell your vehicle, it is your responsibility to tell Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) that you are no longer the registered owner.
If you do not tell the RMS that you have sold or disposed of your vehicle, you could be held responsible for any parking or speeding fines, and any penalties and fees if the vehicle is subsequently abandoned.
Abandoned shopping trolleys can cause vehicle damage and contribute to the disorderly appearance of the streetscape.
When you use a trolley please return it to the bays provided. Do not leave it where it can cause damage to people or property.
Report an Abandoned Shopping Trolley
To report an abandoned shopping trolley, please visit Snap Send Solve. Alternatively report the following retailer's trolleys to Trolley Tracker:
Report the following retailer's trolley's to 1800 Trolley:
- First Choice Liquor
- Bunnings Warehouse
If the retailer fails to collect the reported trolley, you can report an abandoned trolley to Council by contacting Customer Service.
Leaving rubbish in public spaces such as the footpath, nature strip, in a park, street, or next to a bin is illegal.
You can report illegal dumping by:
- Contacting Council
- Visiting RID Online
- Calling the NSW EPA RID helpline on 131 555
- Reporting through Snap Send Solve
Any information will be treated with confidence.
The following information will help Council catch illegal dumpers:
- Date and time
- Description of the person
- Vehicle description and registration
Where the provision of information to Council leads to a successful penalty or conviction, 25% of the penalty up to $2,500 will be awarded.
Council recognises that garage sales are part of the Southern Highlands landscape, but we do ask that people holding these sales adhere to a couple of common sense practices to ensure the rest of the community isn’t affected.
- It is fine to put up a sign, but a maximum of just two sign: one at your property and another at the nearest cross street.
- The sign must NOT be larger than 30cm x 42cm or A3 size.
- If that cross street is a roundabout, make sure the sign is NOT on the roundabout or in any place that distracts motorists or their line of sight.
- The signs can only go up on the morning of the sale and must be removed immediately after the sale is over.
- Signs should NOT be dangerous or obstruct pedestrians.
- Signs should NOT be placed on power poles or trees with nails and screws.
As these signs have an address, it is not difficult for our Rangers to trace any offending signs, then serve an infringement notice.
If signs do not comply with the regulations, fines start from:
- $200 per sign under Sec 146A(1) of the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997.
- $452 per sign under Reg 11(1)(a) Road Regulation 2008.
- Professional Service Rangers costs from $91 per hour.
Impounding costs may apply.
Council encourages regular mowing of your property to maintain regional pride in our towns and villages, and to prevent serious health and safety implications caused by overgrown premises.
What is an Overgrown Property?
Land may be considered to be not in a safe or healthy condition when it is located in a built up urban area and vegetation on the land:
- Is harbourage for vermin (evidence can include sightings, faeces, nests, runs, eggs etc); or
- Is likely to be harbourage for vermin (such vegetation should be consistently thick to an average height of approximately 600mm and covering a sufficient area to have the potential to harbour vermin. It does not follow from this that an uncleared or regenerated bush block comprising of mainly indigenous vegetation would be considered likely to be a harbourage for vermin; or
- Is determined by the relevant fire authority as posing a high fire hazard.
Concerns & Complaints
Communicate with your neighbour first if you have any concerns relating to their property.
If you cannot get the property owner to look after their property, contact Council. Council will become involved with overgrown properties if they involve a potential risk to health.
Council will initially write to the owner. If, after a reasonable amount of time, nothing has been done about the problem, Council can take other steps to ensure it is cleared and no longer poses a potential risk to health.
All bush fire hazard complaints received by Council must be referred to the Rural Fire Service for their determination, in accordance with the Service Agreement signed by the Rural Fire Service and Council.
Council will not consider vegetation to be a fire hazard if it has been determined not to be a fire hazard by the NSW Fire Service or the Rural Fire Service.
For the purpose of Council to investigate Overgrown Properties:
- Overgrown Vegetation does not include any vegetation that is protected by either the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 or Council’s Tree Preservation Order, and does not include a commercial crop.
- Vermin does not include any native fauna.
- Built Up Urban Area includes land within a zone designated "residential" (but not "rural residential") "village", "industrial", or "business" under the Wingecarribee LEP 1989.
Wingecarribee Shire Council administers and enforces the road rules to maximise the use of available space and to provide access to parking for all motorists.
Illegal parking may create an unsafe environment for other vehicles and pedestrians by causing an obstruction or impeding vision. If your vehicle is parked illegally you may be issued with a Penalty Infringement Notice (PIN).
Council’s Rangers are authorised to issue PINs and Revenue NSW processes penalty notices on behalf of Council.
Make a Payment or Request a Review
Payment of PINs are made through Revenue NSW. Penalty notices are not paid directly to Council.
Revenue NSW determines all appeals for infringement notices issued by Council. You may request a review or elect to have the matter heard in Local Court by contacting Revenue NSW. Their details are also on the back of the infringement notice.
You can also view details about as well as the status of your penalty notice by using the myPenalty website.
Service NSW Mobile App
Revenue NSW have released a fines function in the Service NSW mobile app so customers can pay and resolve their fines anytime, anywhere.
This means Revenue NSW can engage with all Service NSW/RMS mobile app users to make it easy for them to finalise their fines promptly and improve your collection/finalisation rate.
Customers can use the app to:
- pay their penalties or obtain their BPAY reference to pay
- view a list of their outstanding penalties and the amount of their debt in one place 24/7 on the go - to manage their fines
- keep track and on top of penalty payment plans
- view images, get information about other options and link to myPenalty to lodge Reviews/court
- set reminders and receive notifications of new and overdue fines - to avoid late fees and debt recovery
- confirm we have received their request for review/court request/nomination and their penalty is 'pending decision'
as well as:
- renewing/managing registrations or conducting rego checks
- updating their contact details with RMS/Service NSW
- keeping track of their licence and demerit points.
- locate their nearest Service NSW centre and the current wait time
For more information please view:
Mobile App Flyer(PDF, 651KB)
Download Stormwater Drainage Issues Factsheet(PDF, 437KB).
Stormwater Issues on Private Property
As a result of Wingecarribee Shire’s climate and topography, flooding issues from stormwater can be a common problem for property owners. Flooding and nuisance issues from stormwater can sometimes result in damage to property and distress to residents.
Stormwater is rainwater that runs off surfaces such as lawns, roads, roofs, car parks and natural ground surfaces. Stormwater that is unable to enter the underground drainage system will find its natural way to the nearest watercourse via overland flow paths. These overland flow paths are typically natural depressions (that often occur through private property), open channels, roadways and public reserves.
Read the Stormwater Drainage Over Private Property Policy
Property Owner’s Responsibilities
Property owners have a range of responsibilities, which if carried out correctly, will minimise the threat of stormwater damage in the event of heavy rain:
- You must maintain your roof water drainage, stormwater pipes, gutters, downpipes, stormwater inlet pits and any other components of your approved drainage system on your property in good condition and in compliance with any Council requirements,
- You are required to accept natural overland flow from adjoining properties or public land and must not divert, redirect or concentrate the flow from its natural path on to neighbouring properties,
- It is important to note that a downstream property owner cannot erect any type of barrier by way of large walls or closed fencing that interferes with the path of stormwater - if you are downstream, you must accept the 'natural' run-off on to your property,
- Ensuring that all buildings (including sheds) have an adequate storm water drainage system connected to a legal point of discharge (e.g. connected to kerb and gutter or inter-allotment drainage system),
- When constructing hardstand areas you must control stormwater in order to prevent it from flowing on to adjacent property. It is preferable to minimise the area of water-resistant surfaces such as concrete or paved areas and driveways,
- If there is an easement on your property it must be maintained and kept clear of debris to allow the natural flow of stormwater.
Property owners generally need to ensure that roof water and stormwater is drained to one of the following to comply with AS/NZS 3500.3:2003 Plumbing and Drainage Part 3: Stormwater Drainage.
- Council street kerb and gutter,
- An inter-allotment drainage system; or
- Council controlled drainage easement or drainage reserve.
When Council May Take Action
Council Officers investigate and take action in relation to stormwater drainage complaints only where it relates to the flow of surface water from one property across the common land boundary onto another property, and where the following criteria has been met;
- Evidence being produced that substantiates the surface water has caused or is likely to cause physical damage to land or building on the other land; and
- Surface water has been directed to and/or concentrated in a particular area by a man-made structure or drain; or
- Surface water is the result of defective roof drainage from a building.
When Council Will Not Take Action
Council Officers have the discretion to take no action or are unable to take action in the following circumstances;
- Surface water run-off occurs only in periods of exceptionally heavy rainfall,
- The surface water is natural run-off from the property or properties above due to the topography and isn’t redirected in any manner,
- Surface water is flowing down and/or across existing hard surface areas such as driveways, tennis, courts, concrete slabs or paved areas,
- The location of an existing dwelling, building or outbuilding impacts on surface run-off,
- The run-off is from new development work that is the subject of a development consent and has been constructed in accordance with that consent,
- The drainage problem involves discharges from defective or blocked private inter-allotment drainage easement infrastructure e.g. pipes and drainage pits. Note: private inter allotment easements are the responsibility of the property owners who are burdened by and/or benefited by the easement.
How to Report a Stormwater Drainage Issue
If you are experiencing stormwater issues as a result of stormwater being directed onto your property, you may contact Council via email to report your concern (firstname.lastname@example.org).
When reporting a stormwater drainage issue on private land, please include the following information;
- Describe what is occurring,
- When did it occur and the frequency of occurence,
- What is the source on the neighbouring land that is causing the problem,
- Take photos of the stormwater problem as it is occurring,
- Whether you made contact with Council about this issue previously,
- Describe how your land and/or building are being damaged. (if possible include a written report from a suitably qualified person stating the land or building is likely to or is being damaged),
- Whether you obtained professional advice as to the source of the stormwater issue,
- Whether you liaised with your neighbour to address this matter,
- Whether you sought advice or initiated mediation with your neighbour through the Community Justices Centre (details below).
Natural Flow / Sloping Blocks
Natural flow is the flow path down the slope following the contours of the land and occurs before any excavation, development or building. An upstream property owner cannot be held liable merely because surface water flows naturally from their land on to the lower land of a neighbor.
The upstream property owner may be liable if the water is made to flow in a more concentrated form than it would naturally flow. Ideally, runoff should be directed to the street, or to a drainage system if provided. Property owners need to be aware that landscaping can change the topography of a property and the way it distributes water.
Council is unlikely to investigate stormwater complaints involving the natural flow of stormwater from one property to another.
Buildings Currently Under Construction
Complaints about buildings under construction that are subject to a current building approval should, in the first instance, be referred to the responsible Principal Certifying Authority (PCA) or the Builder.
The details for the Principal Certifying Authority and Builder should be visible on the building sign on the front of the premises.
The individual builder remains responsible for all stormwater installations permitted under the development consent whilst the building is under construction. In the event of a complaint, the PCA has enforcement powers and must take appropriate action under relevant legislation.
Seepage water is the responsibility of individual property owners. Where sloping blocks have been excavated to obtain a flat yard or building site, seepage drains should be constructed to collect and redirect water to an approved stormwater drainage system.
You should liaise with neighbours to address any problems. If possible, drainage easements can be created to direct water to a Council stormwater drainage system.
Localised Overland Flooding
Localised overland flooding may occur when one or more of the following happens:
- • The amount of rainfall exceeds the design capacity of the stormwater and roof drainage system,
- • Private inlet pits and pipes are undersized or become blocked,
- • A building or a fence is obstructing the overland flow path
You can be held liable for damages if changes on your property increase flood levels and associated risk on an adjoining property.
A drainage easement is a legal encumbrance on the title of a property to provide Council with the authority to carry out whatever works are required on drainage infrastructure within the easement. The infrastructure can include open drainage channels, below ground pipe systems and grated inlets that are designed to accept allotment and roof water together with larger upstream catchment stormwater flows.
Generally, no structures or improvements (such as dwellings, buildings and landscaping treatments including earthworks, retaining walls and fill) are permitted within the easement boundaries.
The property owner is responsible for the maintenance of an easement on private property. Council is not responsible for vegetation maintenance, including the clearing of weeds and trees or any other maintenance of overgrown vegetation, to watercourses or easements located within private property. However, Council may carry out maintenance work to stormwater drainage infrastructure located within drainage easements on private property, as deemed necessary, to ensure the efficient operation of the system.
If you wish to formally manage dispute resolutions, you may consider contacting the Community Justices Centre. The Centre offers free advice and mediation services and can be contacted on 1800 990 777 or through their website www.cjc.nsw.gov.au.
Who Can I Contact If My Property Is Flooding?
For emergency help in flood events, contact the State Emergency Service (SES) on 132 500.
Branches overhanging a footpath can potentially cause an obstruction, preventing pedestrians a clear passageway.
Property owners are responsible for trees within their property boundary and should ensure overhanging branches are pruned back from the footpath to avoid injury and obstructions to pedestrians.
If you rent or own a home or business in the Wingecarribee Shire, you are responsible for ensuring that any footpaths that adjoin your property are free from obstructions to pedestrians and traffic.
Footpaths are important and are used for safe passage by pedestrians.
Overhanging branches create unsafe situations and can cause traffic hazards.
Removing obstructions ensures the path is clear for all users including people with specific access needs, such as prams and wheelchairs, the elderly and sight impaired, and will ensure safety for all pedestrians and traffic.
Obstructions include vegetation such as:
Council asks residents to monitor vegetation on their property to ensure that branches are pruned back to the property line.
Where trees or shrubs from private property overhang a public walkway or carriageway and that tree is causing an obstruction, Council can contact the resident to request that they prune or remove the vegetation.
Report Private Trees Overhanging Public Space
To request that Council investigate private trees or shrubs overhanging public space, or if you see overhanging branches from a Council owned tree, please contact Council on:
Telephone: 02 4868 0888
Under the Local Government Act 1993, it is illegal to advertise a vehicle for sale or any other article on a public road or in a public place without prior approval from Council.
Council Rangers conduct regular patrols and a person who fails to obtain approval from Council to sell their vehicle or other item may be issued with a penalty.
Council reminds any prospective sellers that approval must first be sought from Council to advertise a vehicle or other article on a public road or public place.
Written applications will be considered by Council on case by case basis.
Report Illegal Advertising
Report illegal advertising by visiting the below link;
Snap Send Solve
Local Government Act 1993
Section 68, Part E (2)
Section 626 (3)