Member for Port Macquarie, Leslie Williams today rolled up her sleeves to take part in the annual NSW Graffiti Removal Day.
Mrs Williams joined with volunteers from the Port Macquarie West Rotary Club and Hastings Valley Netball to remove unsightly graffiti which had been sprayed on the netball clubhouse.
“Every year graffiti vandalism costs NSW more than $100 million to remove from public assets, community facilities and private property,” Mrs Williams said.
“Graffiti Removal Day gives us all an opportunity to do our bit to combat graffiti and clean up our local area and I appreciate the help of the volunteers that I worked with on the day as well as those around our community.
“The prevalence of graffiti has increased locally over the past couple of months which has resulted in more and more complaints to my office, police and council,” Mrs Williams said.
“I know our local police have commenced court proceedings against 11 people over malicious damage involving graffiti this year which is good, but it is an all of community approach that is needed to stamp it out.
“Marking property can attract a fine of up to $440 or for an aggravated offence $2,200 or 12 months imprisonment.
“If anyone witnesses people marking property with graffiti they should report it immediately.
“I would also encourage our councils to consider funding a Graffiti Buster volunteer like the Great Lakes’ Ted Bickford.
“Ted has done an amazing job of removing graffiti to the point where there is now a zero tolerance of graffiti in the Forster-Tuncurry area,” Mrs Williams said.
“This has been achieved at a fraction of the cost that councils allocate to graffiti removal locally.
“I’m sure there would be volunteers in our area that would be only too happy to take on the challenge if equipped with the right materials and transport. I know Ted would jump at the chance of offering his expertise which he has developed over the past 20 years.
“So while I fully support Graffiti Removal Day and congratulate everyone involved, what we need is a year long campaign to eliminate graffiti, not just one day,” Mrs Williams said.
Posted on 23 Sun, November, 2014
by Leslie Williams