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Tree Policy

A. Pruning recommendations:

1. Pruning cuts should be made just outside the branch collar. No more than one-quarter (¼) of the tree’s live crown should be removed in a single growing season.
2. Remove dead or damaged limbs that may fall and cause damage or injury.
3. Remove low limbs or branches that interfere with pedestrian or vehicular traffic by pruning to a minimum height of Twelve (12) feet over all public roadways, alleys and easements and a minimum height of eight (8) feet over sidewalks.
4. Remove limbs or branches blocking traffic signs and street light efficiency.
5. Reduce overhead utility line conflicts.
6. Improve aesthetic appearance and general health of the tree.

B. Tree Topping: It shall not be normal practice, for any person, firm, or city department to top any
boulevard or other tree on public property. Topping is defined as the severe cutting back of limbs to stubs larger than three inches in diameter within the tree’s crown to such a degree so as to remove the normal canopy and disfigure the tree. Crown reduction may be substituted, where appropriate. Trees severely damaged by storms or other causes, or certain trees under utility wires or other obstructions where other pruning practices are impractical may be exempted from this provision.

C. Reimbursement Programs: There may be either relief or City reimbursement programs available to partially fund tree planting or removal on boulevards and rights-of-way. Information concerning these programs may be requested at City Hall.

D. Storm Response: Certain emergency response protocol is followed after a devastating windstorm, which may include search and rescue, finding downed power lines, and looking for other hazardous conditions or situations. Tree cleanup priorities:

1. Open up priority routes throughout the City
2. Open all roads and alleys throughout the City
3. Remove hazardous trees and/or hanging branches
4. Grind stumps

E. Replacement: In order to maintain the overall forest, reasonable efforts shall be made to replace trees that are removed and protect quality trees that are endangered.

F. Construction: Trees of desirable species and good health shall be protected as much as possible from damage during construction, sidewalk repair, utilities work above and below ground, and other similar activities. The zone of protection shall include the ground beneath the canopy of the tree.

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