Moyne Shire Council has decided to remove nine Norfolk Island hibiscus "itchy bomb" trees in Bank Street, Port Fairy after receiving a petition from residents which described the trees as a health risk.
Councillors voted unanimously to remove the trees at Tuesday's open council meeting.
Cr James Purcell said the medical evidence from concerned residents had been clear and it was the right choice to remove the trees.
"It's another instance of us listening to our community," he said.
The work to remove and replace the troublesome trees is expected to cost council as much as $15,000. Council said it would work with residents to select an appropriate replacement species.
Cr Damian Gleeson, while supporting the removal of the trees, worried about the precedent council was setting.
He said he didn't intend to suggest any of the Bank Street petitioners had provided bogus documents, but he was concerned people might use fraudulent medical certificates to petition the removal of other trees like Port Fairy's iconic Norfolk Pines.
"I'm not a medical expert, but are we going to start chopping all our trees down? What checks do we have in place to ensure that these claims are legitimate?" he said.
"I'm not suggesting that anybody who signed the petition, particularly with medical certificates, that that's not right. But I just wonder whether we make a rod for our back in the future, because it would certainly be a great way to get rid of all the Norfolk Pines."
Cr Purcell said such concerns were understandable but spurious, given the special protections on the town's Norfolk Pines.
"They are heritage listed, our Norfolk Pines, and that won't happen," he said.
He said whoever decided to plant the itchy bomb trees in the first place had made "the wrong decision, and I think it's a good move to get rid of them".
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