2019 Documents

Resolution to Expedite Tree Ordinance Rewrite

Resolution 19-R-3365 was ADOPTED by the Atlanta City Council on March 18, 2019 and
APPROVED by City Charter Section 2-403 on March 27, 2019



WHEREAS, Atlanta's Tree Protection Ordinance is an environmentally important law that protects the city's tree canopy and sustains its urban forest for the benefit of residents, visitors and long-term sustainability of Atlanta's ecosystem; and

WHEREAS, despite the intent of the existing Tree Protection Ordinance, the loss of Atlanta's most valued trees and forest resources continues at an alarming pace; and

WHEREAS, the Planning Department contracted with the firm Biohabitats to work on the Tree Ordinance project and develop an urban ecology framework with a mandate to "define a better future condition for the natural environment, including high-level recommendations about future green spaces, green connections, and green policies"; and

WHEREAS, the project commenced in mid-2018 with the collection and analysis of data and community forums scheduled to be held during April 2019, and a final draft of the ordinance projected to be completed by late July or early August 2019; and

WHEREAS, development in the City of Atlanta is on the rise, with over 22,537 construction permits issued for construction year-to-date, which is an 8% increase over 2018 and a 37% increase over 2014 figures; and

WHEREAS, historically Atlanta is called the "city of trees" because it is covered with an extensive canopy of mature trees and this rich history is in jeopardy of being erased; and

WHEREAS, there is a pressing need, substantially related to the public health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Atlanta to expeditiously enact regulations governing the protection of trees.

NOW, THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ATLANTA HEREBY RESOLVES that the Atlanta City Planning Department make every effort to expedite the completion of the Atlanta Tree Ordinance rewrite and review its timeline for any modifications which could be implemented to expedite the process.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Atlanta City Planning Department consider reviewing available options for enacting some interim development controls governing preservation of trees until permanent controls are adopted through the Tree Ordinance re-write.

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED that all resolutions or parts of resolutions in conflict with this resolution are repealed.



Non-Construction Related Tree Removal

When attendees at the June 6, 2019 Tree Ordinance Rewrite Draft Outline public meeting were asked to comment on the "Non-Construction Related" concept board on how they felt about the "Ability to remove one (1) non-high value tree per year no matter the condition", the responses were overwhemlingly negative:


  • Definitely no! Please don’t do!
  • Don’t like One Tree a Year – Recipe for disaster.
  • This will only make it easier to remove trees.
  • Terrible idea! If we are serious about protecting the canopy – don’t do this!
  • 1 Tree/year dangerous precedent!
  • No – this would give too much leeway – there would be NO trees left in some neighborhoods
  • People break the law now. Don’t make it easier.
  • 1 is an arbitrary number. A hazardous tree is a hazard.
  • Who determines that the tree is non-high value?
  • BAD IDEA - Maybe there should be a provision that if a homeowner has a mimosa tree and wants to replace it with an oak or other “high value” tree, then on an individual basis ok.
  • Only damaged or sick or risky w/out large $ fee or ecological remediation.
  • Where’s the calculation showing that removing 1 tree per year will increase tree canopy?
  • Ripe for abuse. No.
  • No to 1 non-high value tree per year regardless of conditions. Since 95% of ATL’s trees are on private property & many lots are tiny, this could decimate our coverage in no time.
  • No.
  • NO CAP? Over time this policy could lead to massive deforestation on residential lots. Suggest there be financial deterrents.

They also disliked the fact that this proposal allowed healthy tree removal at the discretion of the property owner, not the City Arborist:

  • Number of trees to be removed should be determined by a city arborist rather than have a set number.
  • Every tree by a certain size needs a permit to cut after arborist agrees and appeals have been exhausted.
  • Don’t set a number – let arborist assess.
  • (Covered by another sticky note) … this board is total nonsense. If dead, dying, hazardous as deemed by arborist, the tree should be removed. If healthy, it should remain. Period.

There were a couple of comments that supported this proposal, and one suggested it be limited to one tree every FIVE years. 


  • Great idea. Apply to non-commercial property only.
  • 1/5yr (A second comment said “Yes, I agree”).

A Better Alternative

There were a couple of comments that reflected public receptivity to providing support for people who couldn't afford to maintain their trees or remove them in case of an emergency.  

  • What provisions are there for elderly, low income & fixed income residents who need help w/tree maintenance or emergency removal?
  • Help is needed for elderly homeowners
    • To cut dead trees
    • To remove kudzu and ivy from existing trees
    • Prune trees to prevent hazardous conditions.

Perhaps we should explore earmarking a portion of the Tree Trust Fund to:

  • Assist qualified residents with tree maintenance and/or removal issues;
  • Provide more education on the benefits of trees and how removing them creates other costs homeowners may not be taking into account (higher electrict bills, more flooding, etc.);
  • Teach people how to recognize a DDH tree as opposed to a healthy tree that normally sheds leaves or branches.



No Postings and No Appeal Options

When attendees at the June 6, 2019 Tree Ordinance Rewrite Draft Outline public meeting were asked to comment on the "Doing Everything Right" concept board on how they felt about having "No Postings" and No Appeal Options", the responses were overwhelmingly negative:

  • Appeals and postings needed to keep transparency, prevent corruption, and provide citizen oversight.
  • There should always be appeals and postings. This helps with oversight and transparency.
  • The TPO w/o the Appeals process will be just a permitting process for developers.
  • We need appeals.
  • How can argue “doing everything right” if there’s no appeal?
  • No posting and no appeals = No trees.
  • More appeals.
  • There must be an appeals process with the new ordinance! Property owners and residents need an open and transparent process (w/right to participate).
  • No postings/no appeal = lots of opportunity for corruption. Protect our right to appeal!
  • No! This means no citizen oversight regarding what is acceptable flexibility.
  • (Note partially covered) … balances for this process = Keep the appeals process.
  • Appeals are critical – the city doesn’t always have all the necessary information to make a good decision.
  • Must keep postings and appeals with transparent log online of each for public review please!

Likewise, when asked to comment on the "Development Standards" concept board how they felt about a "Streamlined process with no appeal/ posting required", they posted:

  • With no enforcement and no transparency this is a waste of time and effort.
  • Do not understand streamlined process w/no appeal/posting rec’d. This opens up to misinterpretation/corruption due to lack of oversight.
  • The arborists aren’t enforcing the ordinance today. How can we trust them to do so under and new ordinance?
  • Question: Dies city have the staff? Is there a commitment to tree protection?
  • It cannot be that the city cannot stop this! 

A Better Alternative

We support streamlining the permitting process for developers who are indeed "doing everything right" by not having them go through the appeals process.  However, appeals already are not being filed on developers who are following the Tree Protection Ordinance.  The public simply does not trust the City to decide a developer is "doing everything right" without any public oversight since appeals are frequently upheld by the Tree Commission, indicating that the City sometimes gets it wrong.

The number of appeals heard by the Tree Commission can be reduced by:

  • Having the Arborist Plan Reviewer refuse to issue preliminary permits which they know are appealable. The City Arborist should be on the front line of upholding the Tree Ordinance, not deferring that responsibility to the Tree Commission;
  • Advising developers on how a tree appeal will delay their permit so there's a clear incentive to "doing everything right" the first time;
  • Publicly recognizing developers who follow the tree ordinance and do an outstanding job of minimizing tree loss to the maximum extent possible;
  • Having the Tree Commission more fully evaluate appeals before hearings and pro-actively work with both parties to resolve disputes before the hearing.






Is City Planning Listening to the People?

Is City Planning listening to the community, or have they become so invested in their original Tree Protection Ordinance (TPO) Rewrite Draft Outline that they can't turn the ship?

At the August 22, 2019 City Council work session, City Planning was still proposing "streamlined postings, appeals and permit process" and "allowances to remove healthy trees" for non-construction purposes, two ideas which were overwhelmingly rejected by the residents who attended the presentation of the TPO Rewrite Draft Outline in June 2019. 

We must keep the posting and appeals process for all properties in the new tree ordinance.

In the past, "streamlining" the permitting process has resulted in limiting public participation by shortening appeal times and making it more difficult to appeal.  For example, prior to 2008 we had 15 days to appeal a preliminary permit on private property; now with "streamlining", we have only 5 days to appeal. How much more streamlined can we get without completely doing away with postings and appeals?

That's exactly where City Planning was heading with the new tree ordinance when in June they proposed to eliminate postings and appeals for any project the City decided was "doing everything right". People were completely opposed to that concept, and yet City Planning is still proposing to streamline the postings, appeals and permit process, with no assurances that this streamlining will not make it more difficult or virtually impossible to appeal some tree permitting decisions.  City Planning needs to recognize that a tree ordinance which puts some permits behind closed doors and out of public view invites the kind of corruption which the City of Atlanta already knows too well. 

The community doesn't want the allowance to remove one healthy tree a year in the new tree ordinance.

Residents also were shocked to hear City Planning propose an allowance for individual property owners to remove one healthy tree a year that the City decides is "non-high value" (a non-scientific assessment).  While we understand that some people fear trees falling on their houses and others need financial assistance to maintain their trees, the answer to these concerns is more education, greater public investment in tree maintenance, and appropriate use of DDH and landscape permits, not allowing tree removal simply because someone doesn't like a tree in their yard.  (Plus, developers may be able to cut the largest tree on their property with no recompense if this proposal is passed.)  Public outcry to this concept was heated, with people saying that it was "a recipe for disaster" and "could decimate our coverage in no time." Yet, City Planning is continuing to push for "allowances to remove healthy trees."  Why?  The "one tree a year" allowance is completely counter to the City's stated goal to increase our canopy coverage to 50%. 

What did City Planning hear the people say? 

In his August 22, 2019 presentation to City Council, Tim Keane presented the following as the feedback he received from each of the primary stakeholder groups:

Engaged residents

  • Atlanta’s tree canopy is special and a major source of pride and enjoyment
  • Allow for flexibility with homeowners going through non-development processes
  • Increase education and support for tree protection and maintenance

Advocacy groups (Keane said this group included The Tree Next Door and City in the Forest)

  • Support more protection and preservation of trees early in the process
  • Stronger enforcement
  • Plant more native trees
  • Preserve and conserve land
  • Ordinance needs more definition and clarity
  • Build smarter, more environemtnally [sic] sensitive (grading, soils, etc.)

Development industry

  • Homebuilders, homeowners, and property owners want to protect our natural environment AND have the homes the citizens of Atlanta need.
  • Imperative that property owners must be able to fully utilize the “buildable area” of their lot.
  • Improve the process to be more consistent and reliable
  • Align standareds [sic] with other ordinances and agencies
  • Affordability concerns with more stringent regulation - will increase cost to build

City agencies

  • Replanting standards and processes often hinder public projects funding and schedules.
  • Ideal to have alignment with private development standards.
  • Need for better communication and coordination among city agencies, potential centralization

The scant amount of feedback City Planning says its received from "Engaged residents" makes these residents appear to be hardly engaged at all.  Surely this group does not include the very engaged residents who showed up at the June public feedback sessions, or else, City Planning missed 95% of their feedback.

Perhaps City Planning is assuming that the people who are engaged enough to show up at a tree ordinance public feedback session is actually part of the "Advocacy groups" category, even though the vast majority of them do not belong to any tree advocacy group.  If so, aren't some key points missing from what they said? (Like what's in the red text above?)

The concerns listed underneath "Advocacy groups" above completely ignore the summary feedback TTND member deLille Anthony sent to City Planning on July 17, 2019, which highlights that the public wants the posting and appeals process to stay (and, at minimum, adhere to the current online TPO posting requirements) and that the public wants the proposed “one free tree removal a year” policy to be removed, period.  The letter also addresses the lack of data in the rewrite process and the concern with their Tree Bank proposal to allow recompense to be in the form of tradable credits instead of real dollars.  But none of those key concerns are reflected in the "Advocacy groups" feedback above. Why? 

Rewriting the ordinance was supposed to help retain and grow the tree canopy, not accelerate its destruction.  

Has City Planning has gotten so far down the road with what they think are good ideas, especially for developers, that they have stopped listening to feedback that may require them to reassess what they are proposing? We know we won't get a tree ordinance that we like 100%, but we will insist on having a tree ordinance that addresses our top concerns that City Planning appears to be ignoring.  We know that residents are adamantly opposed to giving up their appeal rights and that they are adamantly against the "one free tree removal a year" proposal, so these two items need to be struck from the first draft, or else we will be advocating to shut down this rewrite process. 

For more comparison on the feedback City Planning and The Tree Next Door captured from the "sticky notes" placed on the concept boards in June, click here.


Feedback Comparison of Community Reaction to TPO Draft Outline

Below is a summary of the feedback that was posted via sticky notes to the presentation boards presented at each of the four meetings City Planning held June 3 – 6, 2019 to review the Tree Ordinance Draft Outline.

  • The left-hand column includes City Planning’s summary of notes posted from all four meetings, under the subheading “On the components presented in the June forums”.
  • The right-hand column represents The Tree Next Door’s summary of notes posted during the last meeting. TTND did not photograph and transcribe the sticky notes posted to the presentation boards until the final meeting on June 6.

City Planning’s summary should include all the feedback captured in the right-hand column in addition to the left.  However, all the feedback from the June 6 meeting didn’t make it into the summary of all four meetings, and in some cases, it was completely missed.  Tree Next Door members who attended the three previous meetings report that the feedback they saw on the boards was very similar all four evenings, so we don’t understand how the feedback can be so different.

The two most criticized proposals in the Tree Ordinance Draft Outline was:

  1. to eliminate the posting and appeals process and
  2. to allow one non-high value tree to be cut on a property each year for non-construction purposes. 

As you can see by the comparison of what the City summarized and what TTND captured from the June 6 meeting, City Planning has either completely misinterpreted what the people said or failed to understand the degree of opposition towards these two proposals.  To illustrate:

1.  Eliminating the posting and appeals process

Public objection to this proposal was so overwhelming at the first three meetings that the TPO Rewrite project manager Elizabeth Johnson assured the meeting attendees at the final meeting that there was no need to belabor this point. She said that they had already heard “loud and clear” that this proposal was not acceptable. 

But they didn’t hear anything “loud and clear”.  Nowhere in the City Planning’s overall summary do we see ANY objection to eliminating the posting and appeals process.  Instead, we see in the board-specific feedback that the City believes the public is receptive to eliminating appeals on projects in which standards are being met and streamlining the process on others. But what we heard is that people are completely against eliminating appeals and they certainly don’t trust the “streamlining” process.  By reducing citizen oversight, they feel the City is reducing transparency and encouraging corruption.

2.  Allowing property owners (including developers) to remove one healthy tree each year

Public objection to this proposal was just as intense as the proposal to eliminate the posting and appeals process, but the City fails to capture the magnitude of this opposition. Not only is it not even mentioned in their overall summary, but in the board-specific feedback the City lists more “likes” than “dislikes” for their proposal.  Oddly, in the last bullet point of the feedback to the “Non-Construction Related” presentation board, the City notes that the “voice of the opposition is stronger than the support lending the City to a losing battle,” but the overall summary suggests that there is more positive than negative feedback to what was a nearly universally panned proposal.

In the table below, The Tree Next Door provides the number of comments associated with each topic as well as a direct link to the actual comments that were made on each presentation board. We let you see exactly what the people said verbatim and we have sorted their feedback according to response frequency so you can see what mattered most.  Conversely, the City’s summary provides no links to their source material – you can’t see the actual comments -- nor does it attempt to quantify the number of people who mentioned each issue, so it is impossible to tell the magnitude of concern associated with each topic.


Presentation Board


City Planning’s Summary of Feedback on
Presentation Boards from All Four Meetings
June 3-6, 2019 




TTND’s Summary of Feedback on
Presentation Boards from Just One Meeting

June 6, 2019

 (# of related comments)


Intent and Purpose

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Too many buzzwords
  • Be transparent and accountable with consequences beyond money
  • Transparent and enforceable
  • Include as goals to educate and incentivize protection, planting and/or preservation
  • Clearly tie to the benefits of trees; measurable, accountable, etc.


(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Lack of Trust (10): Disbelief that the stated TPO intent and purpose are measurable goals and will save trees, much less grow the canopy to 50% coverage.
  • No Net Loss of Trees (3): TPO intent and purpose does not include that there will be “no net loss of trees”.
  • Enforcement (3): TPO intent and purpose includes no language about enforcement.
  • Aligning TPO with Other Development Requirements (2): TPO must be given equal footing to other regulations/development requirements and be considered in the beginning of permitting process.
  • Importance of Trees (2): Trees provide other benefits that need to be recognized, and their contribution to high value habitat and high bio-diversity is critical.
  • Community Input (2): TPO intent and purpose needs to include statement on community input, especially those whose voices are not heard over developer money.
  • Grading and footprints (2): Limit land grading and buildable footprints to protect soil.
  • Replanting Trees (1): TOP intent and purpose needs to include tree replanting objectives.

Tree Assessment

(This board was titled “What Should Atlanta's Methods Look Like?at June Meetings.)

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Need more definition on what this looks like for Atlanta
  • Should recognize and appropriately value trees that are ill-suited or improperly placed on site
  • Differing opinions on value for old, large trees vs small, regeneration
  • Link tree assessment to benefits in the Intent & Purpose for accountability and measurability
  • Assess the surrounding areas to evaluate impact to environment with any potential removals (heat island, air filtration, stormwater, property value, equity and access)
  • Other factors:
    • Cultural value; neighborhood significance
    • Dollar value of tree
    • Trees on published lists (champion trees, etc.)
    • Worth to wildlife and habitats
    • Structure of tree (weak-limbed, etc.)
    • Value of forest or groups of trees


(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Tree Assessment (7): Need to prioritize saving the more valuable trees, but some questions around determining what is valuable; need to include stormwater mitigation and erosion control in the value equation.
  • Examples from Other Municipalities (11): What % of the canopy will the valuation method save; need to save smaller trees for future canopy; need more community input on tree valuation, include/exclude certain trees; enforce with moratoriums on building.

Development Standards

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Establish credits for those contributing to existing canopy. I.e., why penalize those supporting/contributing to healthy canopy?
  • Protect within a certain perimeter around the property and allow for flexibility on the interior
  • Higher preservation standards in high impact areas or areas of vulnerability
  • Implement minimum canopy coverages for individual sites
  • Ensure value of protection and/or removal matches value of existing tree
  • Recompense tied to land value
  • Recompense tied to size of tree (value)
  • Encourage better site design:
    • Smaller, reduced or reused footprints; less impervious surfaces or increased use of permeable surfaces
    • Water retention, run-off abatement
    • Minimized soil disturbance or remediation
    • Open space requirements
    • Encourage true density growth, not just larger buildings
    • Strengthen parking lot standards
    • Encourage green and living walls
  • Technical guides
    • Coordinate with Stormwater to ensure work hand in hand
  • Credits
    • Reward those developing a site well
    • For tree species contributing to climate change impacts, clean water, regional ecology and habitat
    • Replanting credits to recompense for younger shade trees and/or large shrubs planted under large overstory
  • Exemptions
    • Acceptable for low-income residents
    • Provide in historic districts and infill
    • Concerns about abuse
  • Incentives
    • Education for non-industry individuals (potential to have required courses for bad actors)
    • To build on previously developed lots v. greenfields
    • To build on abandoned sites or parking lots
    • Only offered in high need or impaired areas
    • To plant in desirable areas, needed areas
    • For property owners to maintain, prevent tree destruction due to neglect
    • For property owners to keep specimen trees
  • Process
    • Build in step on application for accountability of reading the TPO (I have read and understood…)
    • Build in a process to ensure accuracy of what is submitted to Arborist staff
    • Identify projects that impact trees or the environment as soon as possible in the process
    • Appeals and postings are important to the community.
      • Don’t eliminate but can support streamlining for applicants.
      • Consider extending the posting timelines.
      • Public display of all tree removal submissions on city website or other media
  • City assistance
    • Supplement with consultants, contracts to expand city capacity
  • Penalties
    • Increase penalties to deter non-compliance
    • Repeat offender system
    • Ban building permit issuance for those violating (illegal removals)
    • Moratorium on submitting plans for a timeframe
    • Required education courses for those who are repeat offenders or bad actors

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Planning for Trees (11): Make stormwater part of the tree conservation planning process; deny permits to builders who don’t plan for trees; hold developers more accountable for tree removal and clear cutting.
  • Deterrents to Illegal Tree Removal (10): Need to increase penalties to effectively stop illegal tree removal: increase fines, put a moratorium on future work permits, deny certificate of occupancy, revoke developer’s license.
  • Impervious Surfaces and Grading (7): Need to protect soil by reducing grading and impervious surfaces; use existing footprint.
  • Transparency and Trust (5): Lack of faith in the streamlined review process to protect trees and prevent corruption.
  • Tree Recompense and Planting/Replanting (5): Plant more street trees, native trees, tie recompense with land value, remove recompense caps.
  • Tree Valuation (4): Trees must be valued in terms of lifetime ecological value and contribution to the future canopy.
  • Education (3): Need more educational services about trees for the public, architects and engineers; need to understand regulation definitions better.






















City Planning says the public "can support streamlining", but look above: the public says they believe streamlining will not protect trees and will invite corruption.

Protection Zones

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Concerns that zones didn’t cover some forested areas valued by residents
  • Concerns it could negatively affect property value
  • Great, but need more understanding of areas selected and how they’ll be treated differently
  • Standards established as a baseline for the entire city then built out for special zones where needed.
  • Keep protection standards consistent
  • Offer mitigation when trees must be removed in higher density areas (potential to conserve land elsewhere)

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Lack of Coverage (17): Map does now show protection for many single-family neighborhoods, city parks, city urban core, headwaters, or underground streams; protection focused on areas developers are less interested in developing; confusing zones.
  • Merit (4): Protection zones are a good idea but need citizen input and should be used to encourage tree replanting.
  • Protection Criteria (3): Need more specific language; “high-value” is not a scientifically defined term; who decides protection categories?
  • Issues Not Directly Related to Protection Zones (3): Concerns about tree removal rights, enforcement penalties, and education about ordinance.

Doing Everything Right

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Limit removal of trees for projects proposing construction of 2 car garages within a mile of MARTA, Beltline, Streetcar or other major transit line
  • More emphasis on opportunities to develop affordable housing incorporating green infrastructure
  • Allow no appeals for certain projects, but ensure we understand and agree the project meets the standards set forth

City Planning says the public will "allow no appeals for certain projects" but the public says that appeals are necessary to keep transparancy and prevent corruption. 

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • No Appeals and No Postings (12): Appeals and postings needed to keep transparency, prevent corruption, and provide citizen oversight.
  • High Value Trees via Affordability/Mobility (6): Confusion over how high value trees are designated in relation to affordability and mobility, keeping sustainable footprints, and if City can be trusted to do what’s right.
  • Incentives to “Doing it Right” (3): Recognize builders and developers who do it right with special signage.
  • Staffing (3): Concerns that staff is not adequate for the job, dissatisfaction with Arborist Division Manager.
  • Enforcement (2): Ensure that the tree ordinance is enforced by increasing penalties and preventing gamesmanship.

Due Diligence

(Board was titled “Due Diligence - Point A - Pre-Application” at June Meetings)

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Implement as soon as possible

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • What projects should go through this process (8)?: No indication that some projects qualify more than others for this type of review.
  • Missing or other (7): Need pre and post review, native tree replanting, inclusion of other stakeholders & Watershed Management for stormwater review.

Non-Construction Related

(No link to individual comments available)

  • Like*:
    • Don’t allow high value removal, but allow others with replacement of equal value tree
    • Increase the allowed time period
    • Allow with replacement of equal value on property
    • Allows for freedom to manage private property
    • Consider adding other variables such as acreage (x trees per y year per z acres), or up to a certain size.
    • Allowances for trees that threaten homeowner private property (site infrastructure)
    • Ensure value is measured by enough appropriate factors
    • Tie to overall canopy trend (if healthy or not much happening, allow removal. If seeing major changes, do not allow)
    • Allow removal if poor tree siting or planting (ill-suited, improperly placed, too close together, etc.)
    • Allow removal of low-moderate if property meets density with good quality trees, not a set timeline.
  • Don’t like/Uncomfortable
    • Concerns about abuse or potential loophole
    • Don’t allow, but provide expedited support for homeowners
    • Uncomfortable, but understand where may be necessary
    • Counterintuitive to the 50% canopy goal
  • Agree process should be fast and easy for the homeowner
  • Track for sale of property
  • Voice of the opposition is stronger than the support lending the City to a losing battle

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Dislike One Tree Per Year Proposal (16): Overwhelming rejection of this proposal, seen as arbitrary and a disaster for the tree canopy; only DDH trees or undesirable species (if replanted) should qualify.
  • Arborist Oversight (5): The City Arborist should determine which trees should be removed; dissatisfaction with City Planning manager.
  • Education (5): Need more education on what “high value” means, as well as protecting habitat and safety/tree maintenance issues.
  • Replanting (3): Concerns that replanting does not adequately replace mature trees, need to be able to replant in other less tree-dense areas; define “equal value” for replanting high value trees.
  • Low Income/Elderly Assistance (2): More resources are needed for low income and elderly in helping with tree maintenance/emergency removal.
  • Like One Tree Per Year Proposal (2): Support idea for private property, but maybe once every five years?

City Planning seems to have missed how strong the opposition was to this concept by indicating more likes than dislikes, when what we saw posted was the exact opposite.  Yet, it appears that City Planning knows the voice of opposition is stronger than the voice of support, so we question why the City is still pushing for what the people clearly don't want.

Arborist Process Flow

(No link to individual comments available)

  • No summary of feedback on this board provided

(Click here to see individual comments)

  • Process (6): Need plans made available electronically; overall process too complex and/or expensive for elderly and poor; need more instructions; need more focus on saving vs. removing trees.
  • Enforcement (6): Greater need for enforcement; need Saturday coverage; too many trees coming down even under existing ordinance; nuisance trees not followed up on.
  • Appeals (6): Appeals should be free, with more than 5 days to appeal, have clear notification, and occur earlier in the permitting process.
  • Public Trees (3): Workflow does not seem to apply to trees on public property; Parks Department non-responsive.
  • Staffing (3): Too little staff, front desk needs more training, dissatisfaction with Arborist Division Manager.

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