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Friday, March 20, 2009

69 trees to be protected from Howell street reconstruction project

A week away from bid letting for Phase I of the city's $23 million street project, city of Howell staff is scrambling to save 69 trees initially targeted for replacement or replanting. The move was prompted by a resident's complaint to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

"The city's commitment as part of the (Drinking Water Revolving Fund) was not to touch any tree over 8 inches" in diameter, City Manager Shea Charles told members of City Council during Monday night's special council meeting.

The regulation, according to Charles, was understood, but the MDEQ has allowed larger trees to be replanted or replaced on other (East Sibley Street) projects they've funded because a mitigation plan was in place. "On one project, the rule is applied this way, and on another project, it is applied this way. Both are acceptable," Charles explained.

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The painting is by Denise Sydenham

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