PLEASE SIGN OUR PETITION TO REQUEST THAT THE CITY OF DECATUR PRESERVE AND PROTECT THE HEALTHY TREE CANOPY IN OUR COMMUNITY BY:
- Supporting city resident’s interests to preserve healthy mature trees as much as a developer’s interest in clearing the land for higher profit.
- Enforcing the current Tree Protection Ordinance to include the preservation of the large, healthy white oak at 241 Melrose Ave that is in danger of being removed as it is within the buildable area of the lot as well as the healthy specimen oak tree at 262 Forkner Ave that is in danger of encroachment within the drip line and subsequent root damage. These trees may be seen as an obstacle to the developer, but they are viewed as landmark assets to the communities in which they are located.
- Strengthening the current Tree Protection Plan ASAP to include the following: - Double/triple fines for violators (e.g., developers who cut down trees, damage roots, and/or cut limbs from protected trees); -Immediate issuance of Stop Work Orders for violations and requirement that the developer appeal the order to the City Commission before being allowed to continue work at the site; -Developers must put up cash bonds to compensate for the real value of lost trees on both public and nearby private property. -Repeat offenders should not be allowed to develop in the City for an extended period of time (at least one year, longer for egregious violations).
- Using Tree Bank Funds to preserve, protect and/or replace trees in the immediate neighborhood affected by the loss of tree canopy. - Preserve – Incentives such as special recognition by the City and/or awards from Tree Bank Funds would be available to offset potential developer financial loss if the tree protection plan creates a decrease in build able lot area.
- Protect - Tree Bank funds would be used to pay an arborist to assist landowners in protecting boundary trees on properties adjacent to development. Such services may include tree health assessment, giving advice on fertilization or other tips on protection of healthy trees.
- Replace - Tree bank funds would be used to buy and plant trees in the neighborhood where the funds were collected.
- Establishing a six month moratorium on the destruction of healthy specimen trees on properties proposed for new development/redevelopment until public hearings are held and a workable solution may be found.
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