Thursday, December 16, 2010

Commission urges passage of ordinance to preserve tree canopy; would regulate removal of public and private trees - Montclair, NJ

Commission urges passage of ordinance to preserve tree canopy -
Members of the Montclair Environmental Commission urged the Township Council to consider a tree-preservation ordinance that would regulate when citizens may cut down trees, even those dead or diseased, on private property.

The ordinance has been in the works for four years, though the discussion during the council's Dec. 14 meeting was the council's first prolonged debate on the proposal. Imke Oster, a commission member, said Montclair is known for its tree canopy, and it needs to be protected.

'People move here for the fresh air, for the livability of this town,' Oster said. 'There's a big difference when you drive down a tree-lined street. The temperature is much cooler.'

The proposed tree-preservation ordinance would require residents to obtain permits before removing trees greater than 6 inches in diameter on private property. It would also require homeowners to cover the cost to pay for inspection by the township's arborist, and participate in a tree replacement program.

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