Municipal Code Chapter 280
Chapter 280, TREES AND SHRUBS
- § 280-1. Findings and intent.
- § 280-2. Definitions.
- § 280-3. Authority; control and regulation.
- § 280-4. Permit required.
- § 280-5. Application for permit.
- § 280-6. Permit fees.
- § 280-7. Issuance of permit; conduct of work; revocation.
- § 280-8. Compensatory payments.
- § 280-9. Required pruning.
- § 280-10. Nuisance trees.
- § 280-11. Appeals.
- § 280-12. Prohibited activities.
- § 280-13. Developments and subdivisions.
- § 280-14. Disposal of urban forest products.
- § 280-15. Interference prohibited.
- § 280-16. Emergency work.
- § 280-17. Penalties for offenses.
[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of Jamestown 9-10-1990.EN Sections 280-2 and 280-17 amended at time of adoption of Code; see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. II. Other amendments noted where applicable.]
- Parks, Recreation and Conservation Commission — See Ch.57.
- Licenses and permits — See Ch. 175.
- Parks and public lands — See Ch. 193.
- Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 252.
- Subdivision of land — See Ch. 260.
§ 280-1. Findings and intent.
The City Council of the City of Jamestown hereby finds it to be in the best interests of the public health, safety and welfare to provide for the planting, protection, maintenance and removal of trees in the public parkways, public terraces and other municipally owned property within the City of Jamestown and further finds that the proper maintenance of trees and woody shrubs enhances real property values and preserves the quality and character of neighborhoods. It is, therefor, the intention of this chapter to provide for the proper planting, protection, maintenance and removal of trees in the public parkways, public terraces and other municipally owned property within the City of Jamestown.
§ 280-2. Definitions.
For the purpose of this chapter, the words and phrases defined in the sections hereunder shall have the meanings therein respectively ascribed to them, unless a different meaning is clearly indicated by context:
DAMAGE — The altering any part of a tree or its immediate environment, whether externally or otherwise evident, which disturbs the healthy functioning of the tree or any of its parts.
DIRECTOR — The Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation or such person designated by the Director.
PUBLIC PARKWAY and PUBLIC TERRACE — All of that city-owned real property located between the curbline and the private property line along each street and highway within the City of Jamestown.EN
PUBLIC TREE — A tree or shrub located on a public parkway, public terrace or any other municipally owned property.
REMOVE — The elimination of a public tree, whether by deliberate or negligent act or omission.
STREET — The entire width of every public way or right-of-way when any part thereof is open to the use of the public, as a matter of right, for purposes of vehicular and pedestrian traffic.
TREE or SHRUB — Any woody plant.
URBAN FOREST — Public trees located on city-owned or -controlled property.
URBAN FOREST RULES AND REGULATIONS — Rules and regulations promulgated by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation for implementation of this chapter.
§ 280-3. Authority; control and regulation.
The Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation shall have the authority and jurisdiction of regulating the planting, protection, maintenance and removal of trees and shrubs planted or hereafter planted in the public parkways, public terraces and other municipally owned property within the City of Jamestown. The control and regulation of such trees and shrubs shall be subject to the provisions of this chapter and such rules and regulations as the Director deems necessary.
§ 280-4. Permit required.
No person shall commence or proceed with any operation involving the removal, partial removal, damage or destruction or the potential for the removal, partial removal, damage or destruction of a public tree or shrub without first obtaining an urban forestry permit from the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation.
§ 280-5. Application for permit.
Application for an urban forestry permit shall be made in the form prescribed by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation by the following:
- The owner of the property on which the proposed work is to be performed or the owner’s authorized agent, architect or contractor.
- The public utility company, government agency or its authorized agent if the work is to be done by a public utility company or government agency pursuant to its regular operations.
- The abutting property owner or the owner’s authorized agent if the work is to be performed within a public parkway or public terrace.
§ 280-6. Permit fees.
- Fees for permits for any operation involving a public tree shall be based on the estimated cost of the work to be performed at the rate of ten dollars ($10.) for work estimated between one thousand dollars ($1,000.) and ten thousand dollars ($10,000.) and twenty-five dollars ($25.) for work estimated to exceed ten thousand dollars ($10,000.). Annual permits shall be based on the same formula. No fee shall be required for permits for work estimated to cost less than one thousand dollars ($1,000.). No fee shall be required for permits obtained by city departments.
- Each application shall be accompanied by the appropriate permit fee.
- Fees shall be deposited in a separate city account dedicated solely to urban forestry programs.
§ 280-7. Issuance of permit; conduct of work; revocation.
- Each application for a permit shall be approved or disapproved within fifteen (15) days after filing. If the application is disapproved, the applicant shall be notified, in writing, of the reason for rejection. If no action is taken within fifteen (15) days on an application, it shall be deemed to have been approved.
- Permits may be issued on an individual project basis or in the case of public utilities doing routine work on an annual fee basis.
- The person receiving such permit shall conduct such work as required in accordance with such generally accepted arboricultural methods as may be necessary to protect the vitality of such trees and abide by the specifications of this chapter and any rules and regulations as adopted by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation and shall as a condition of such permit agree to hold the City of Jamestown harmless from any and all liability which might result from the work or activity authorized. In addition, the Director may require the person receiving such permit to provide such insurance coverage and in such amounts as he deems necessary to protect the interest of the City of Jamestown.
- The Director may revoke for cause any permit previously approved, and no refund of the permit fee shall be made.
§ 280-8. Compensatory payments.
- No person shall remove any public trees without replacing such trees with trees of equivalent dollar value in the vicinity of the removed trees. The value shall be determined by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation in accordance with standards adopted by the International Society of Arboriculture. If no suitable location exists in the vicinity of the tree removed or if the replacement is of lesser value, the person causing the tree to be removed shall make a compensatory payment to the City of Jamestown equal to the difference in value between the tree removed and any replacement tree. Any public tree that is determined by the Director to be damaged, but not sufficiently to justify its removal, shall be considered devalued. The amount of devaluation shall be paid to the city by the person causing the damage.
- The provisions of this section notwithstanding, the Director shall be authorized to waive the requirement of a compensatory payment when the removal or damage of any public tree is necessary to permit repairs to a public utility, reasonable access to property or similar alterations as deemed by the Director to be in the best interests of public health, safety and welfare, provided that a reasonable alternative to the removal or damage of the public tree is not available. Any public tree thus removed shall be replaced by a tree determined suitable by the Director at the expense of the person requiring said removal.
- Should a public tree be unnecessarily or excessively damaged under such circumstances, compensatory payment shall be required.
§ 280-9. Required pruning.
Any person being the owner of real property abutting a street shall prune any tree or shrub on the owner’s property so that no tree or shrub shall obstruct or interfere with the free and safe passage of pedestrians on any sidewalk or the free and safe passage of vehicles on the paved portion of any street or the view of traffic signals or signs. Acceptable clearances shall be determined by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation.
§ 280-10. Nuisance trees.
- Any tree or shrub located on private or public property which obstructs a street, sidewalk or sewer or which suffers from a communicable disease or insect infestation, as determined by the Director, which threatens the public welfare or the health of public trees is hereby declared to be a public nuisance.
- When such a public nuisance exists involving a tree on private property, the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation shall cause a notice to be mailed, by certified mail, to the owner of the property on which the tree or shrub is located specifying what corrective work is necessary and directing the owner to perform such corrective work to eliminate the nuisance.
- Should any ordered correction not be made within fifteen (15) days of the date such notice is received, the Director shall cause such tree or shrub to be pruned, treated or removed as necessary to eliminate the public nuisance. All expenses involved in such work shall be recorded, and the Director shall be authorized to collect such expenses from the owner of the property on which the tree or shrub is located.
§ 280-11. Appeals.
- Any person affected by an order, grant or denial of a permit or other decision of the Director, when such decision is based upon the provisions of this chapter, may appeal such order, grant, denial or revocation of a permit or other decision to the Parks, Recreation and Conservation Commission.
- Such appeal shall be filed, in writing, with the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation within fourteen (14) days of the date of notification of the ruling.
- Unless continued at the request of the applicant, any appeal shall be heard and decided by the Parks, Recreation and Conservation Commission no later than the second regularly scheduled meeting of the Commission following the filing of the notice of appeal. Action by the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation shall be stayed until the decision is rendered and the applicant notified.
- The Parks, Recreation and Conservation Commission may, in conformity with the provisions of this chapter, reverse or affirm of modify, wholly or partly, the order, grant, denial or revocation of any permit or other decision of the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation.
- The decision of the Parks, Recreation and Conservation Commission shall be final.
- The right to appeal shall be clearly stated on all permits.
§ 280-12. Prohibited activities.
- No person shall make any excavation, place any fill, compact the soil or construct any building, structure, sidewalk, driveway, pavement, curb or public utility within fifteen (15) feet in any direction of any public tree without first obtaining a permit for such work from the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation and conducting such work in accordance with such permit.
- No person shall remove, damage, cut, carve, prune or otherwise disturb above or below ground any public trees or compact, amend or drive on the soil or otherwise disturb the immediate environment around any public tree or attach any rope, wire, nails, advertising poster or other artifact to any public tree or allow any toxic substance to harm or damage any public tree or set fire to or otherwise injure any public tree, except as authorized by permit.
- No person shall plant or transplant any public tree, except as authorized by permit.
- No person shall spray, inject or otherwise apply any fertilizer or pesticide, including but not limited to dormant oil, insecticide, fungicide, herbicide, growth regulator or biological control, to any public tree, except as authorized by permit.
- Nothing contained in this section shall be deemed to prohibit a person from performing ordinary improvement or maintenance activities on private property, including but not limited to lawn care and gardening; provided, however, that activities such as excavations of more than two (2) inches in depth or the tilling of soil to a depth of more than six (6) inches or the addition of more than four (4) inches of soil or other fill material above previous grade within fifteen (15) feet in any direction of a public tree shall require a permit.
§ 280-13. Developments and subdivisions.
- The Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation shall require trees and shrubs to be planted by the property owner or developer on the public parkways, public terraces and other municipally owned property abutting such lands henceforth developed where deemed suitable and proper for the protection and enhancement of the urban forest. In such event, a proposed planting plan and permit application shall be submitted by the property owner or developer to the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation for approval and issuance of an urban forestry permit prior to final approval by the City of Jamestown. The authority to require such planting shall include but is not limited to residential, commercial and industrial development, including parking lots.
- Where the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation determines that planting on the municipally owned or controlled property would be ineffective or unsuitable for the protection and enhancement of the urban forest, he may require plantings to be performed on the developed site outside of the public parkway, public terrace or other municipally owned property under the conditions as set forth in this section.
§ 280-14. Disposal of urban forest products.
The Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation may sell without competitive bidding wood and other forest products generated during urban forestry operations which are not needed by the City of Jamestown pursuant to urban forestry rules and regulations. Moneys generated from compensatory payments, permit fees, donations, gifts, planting fees and insurance claims as each involves public trees and the sale of forest products shall be deposited in a special account dedicated solely to the urban forestry program.
§ 280-15. Interference prohibited.
No person shall prevent, delay or interfere with the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation or any of his assistants in the execution of the enforcement of this chapter or the activity required to conduct the urban forestry program. However, this shall not be construed as an attempt to prohibit a public hearing or any remedy, legal or equitable, to protect the property rights of any property owner within the City of Jamestown.
§ 280-16. Emergency work.
- This chapter shall not govern any emergency activity immediately necessary to protect life, safety or property or to maintain access to any property. Any such activity shall incorporate reasonable efforts to protect trees and shrubs on city property from unnecessary damage.
- Any person or city agency engaged in any action specified by Subsection A of this section shall make a reasonable effort to notify the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation prior to commencing that action and shall, in any event, provide written notice of the emergency and the work done to the Director of Parks, Recreation and Conservation within three (3) calendar days of commencing that work.
§ 280-17. Penalties for offenses.
Any person who violates or fails to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of a violation and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article I, Penalties, plus the costs of rectifying damage to any tree or shrub on city-owned property.