Friday, March 20, 2009
City tree policy takes root
ENCINITAS — The Encinitas City Council has adopted the city's first policy codifying the importance of trees to the community, but many details of how it will work remain to be addressed.
The tree policy, approved unanimously Wednesday, is a set of objectives that will guide the planting, maintenance and removal of the 15,700 trees on city land, mostly in parks, street medians and rights-of-way. It won't apply to trees on private property.
A key component is a new “heritage tree” designation, which will protect certain landmark trees by requiring a special permit and public outreach before they can be removed.
Mayor Maggie Houlihan, who participated in Wednesday's meeting by teleconference, said that recent events – such as public protests over the removal of trees in Orpheus Park – show the need for such a policy.
“What we've had is a couple of situations that have highlighted the fact that we don't have policies in place that protect certain trees that people have strong feelings about,” Houlihan said.
The painting is by Edward Lear