31 - Tree Maintenance - Poynette

Ordinance #31
Planting, Removal, Trimming and Maintenance of Trees - Poynette


(.5) Purpose of Ordinance. This ordinance establishes policies, regulations and standards necessary to insure that the Village and all its residents will continue to benefit from healthy, well managed street trees.

(1) Administration and Enforcement Body. The Poynette Plan Commission is, pursuant to Secs. 27.08, 27.09, and 27.13, Wis. Stats., hereby authorized to exercise the powers and duties of a Board of Park Commissioners to administer and enforce the provisions of this section subject, however, to the supervision and control specific reserved to the Village Board under this section.

(a) A Village Forester shall be designated and appointed by the Village Board pursuant to 27.09(l), WI Stats. The Village Forester shall provide technical advice on tree related matters to Village residents and assist the Village in enforcing and administering provisions of this ordinance and in implementing the Village Urban Forestry Master Plan.

(b) The Village Forester shall develop and maintain a section in the Village of Poynette Standards and Practices Manual which shall detail accepted tree planting and tree maintenance standards for the Village. This document shall provide detailed specifications to the more general language of this ordinance and shall be revised from time to time as deemed necessary by the Village Forester, and subject to the approval of the Village Board, to reflect changing standards of tree care and nursery practice.

(2) Jurisdiction of Plan Commission. The Commission shall have jurisdiction over the planting, transplanting, removal, trimming, spraying and other me, protection, and maintenance of all trees and shrubs on or in that part of every street in the Village, the grade of which has been established, lying between the curb and lot line, and in the center and side plots of all boulevards and parkways, and in all public parks and grounds belonging to the Village, hereinafter referred to as "public trees", and pursuant to the police power of the Village, is given such jurisdiction as to all trees within the Village wherever located insofar as is necessary to control and eliminate hazardous and dangerous conditions to the public, including the prevention and spread of disease and pests which tend to adversely effect, damage, or destroy life or property.

(3) Setting Out, Planting and Removal of Living Shade Trees By Commission; Notice Provided. Whenever the Commission proposes the setting out, planting or removal of any living shade tree, it shall give two weeks written notice to the owner of the lot or parcel on which such tree stands or will stand (or owner of lot immediately abutting a public street, if such shade tree stands or extends into, or will stand extend into, a public street) or his agent, or if neither is known and there be a tenant occupying said property then to such tenant, of a time and place at which the contemplated work will be considered by the Commission and the Village Forester, specifying in detail street, avenue or boulevard and portion thereof, upon or from which trees are proposed be planted or removed, and the general nature and character of the changes an improvements contemplated. After such hearing, the Village Forester, subject to the direction of the Commission shall abandon the proposed work or proceed with it as he believes the best interest of the public requires.

(4) Trees and Shrubs To Be Trimmed Over Public Streets and Places.

(a) The Village, acting under authority of the Village Board and with direction from an Urban Forestry Master Plan, shall have primary responsibility for the planting, pruning, maintenance and removal of public trees. All tree planting, pruning, maintenance and removal activities shall be performed in accordance with generally accepted arboricultural practices, and shall further be performed in accordance with the Village of Poynette Standards and Practices Manual.

(b) No hedge or shrub shall be maintained between the curb and sidewalk, and all hedges, shrubs, and plants near street intersections which are within the sidewalk line shall be kept trimmed by the abutting property owner to a maximum height of three feet at all points within 15 feet of the intersection of the inside sidewalk lines as established from time to time by official sidewalk grade and location maps.

(c) Residents whose property abuts or adjoins spaces with public trees may request planting, maintenance or removal of such public trees by the Village by making such a request through the Village Administrator's office, at which time the Village Forester or Village Public Works Director shall have two weeks to evaluate such request, and if warranted add the necessary work to existing tree maintenance schedules. The Village may, at it's discretion, seek to recover the costs of tree planting, maintenance and removal activities through a special assessment of property owners abutting such trees as detailed in Subsection (6).

(5) Village Authority for Nuisance Trees Hazard Trees, and Prevention of Insect and Disease Spread.

(a) Any tree or part thereof wherever located in the Village which the Village Forester, upon examination, shall find to be dead, dying, infected with disease problems or insect infestations which may cause spread and damage to other trees, or substantially decayed, defective or otherwise hazardous or dangerous shall be removed by the property owner of the lot or parcel on which it stands.- If tree removal is required as a result of an insect or disease infestation, the Village Forester may determine that wood and debris residue from such removal shall be treated or removed from the premises as necessary to prevent further spread of insect or disease infestations. Guidelines for treatment of such trees and tre :sidue are detailed in the Village of Poynette's Standards and Practices Manual. If any such owner shall neglect to remove such tree or portion thereof, then the Commission shall give him, his agent, or his tenant notice of hearing on the matter as is provided in the case of living shade trees under subsection (3), if the tree or portion thereof proposed to be removed is living, and if not living, or if infected with disease or insect pests which threaten imminent spread and/or damage to nearby trees, the Commission or the Village Forester may demand the immediate removal by said owner.

(b) After the hearing, or demand to remove as above provided, the Commission may direct the Village Forester to remove the tree or part thereof The Village Forester shall thereupon remove or cause to be removed such tree or part thereof, and he and any member of the Commission or any third person employed to remove the tree or portion thereof, may enter onto the owner's property, if necessary, to accomplish such removal.

(c) No damages shall be paid to any owner for the destruction or removal (pursuant to this section) of any tree or part thereof or of any hedge, shrub, or plant.

(6) Special Assessments and Collection.

(a) The entire or any part of the cost of protecting, trimming, spraying, planting, renewing, and removal of trees, shrubs, hedges and plants, or any part thereof, between the lot line and curb in front of any lot or parcel of land abutting on a street, avenue, or boulevard, may be charged to and assessed upon such lot or parcel of land. The Village Board shall hold a public hearing on any such proposed assessment and shall give advance notice thereof by publication in the official newspaper of the Village or by posting such notice in at least four conspicuous places.

(b) The Commission shall keep a strict account of the cost of planting, protecting, removing, renewing, trinuning, spraying, and caring for trees and shrubs in front of each lot or parcel of land abutting on any street avenue or boulevard, and prior to the 10th day of November in each year shall make a report to the Village Board and Village Administrator of all work done for which assessments have been made as herein before provided stating and certifying the description of the land, lots, parts of lots, or parcels of land abutting on a street, avenue, or boulevard in which any such work shall have been done, and the amount chargeable to each piece of property; and the Village Administrator,, at the time of making his annual report to the Village Board of the lots or parcels of land subject to special assessments, shall include therein the lots or parcels so reported to him by the Commission with the amount chargeable thereto for work done during the preceding year.

(c) The amounts reported to the Village Board by the Village Administrator shall be levied by the Board on said lots or parcels of land, respectively, to which they are chargeable, and shall constitute a lien thereon and shall be collected as other special taxes are levied and collected in the Village. The Board may advance out of the park or other proper fund sufficient money for the doing of said work and the special assessments shall, in the event of such advance, be credited to the Poynette Park and Recreation Commission fund of said Village and shall not be diverted or used for any other purpose.

(d) Special assessments may also be levied pursuant to this section for the cost of trimming or removing trees, shrubs, hedges, or plants within any sidewalk line on any lot or parcel, if such tree, shrub, hedge or plant or any part thereof, is found to be hazardous or dangerous under terms of this section, and the owner neglects to remove or trim the same as required pursuant to this section, such assessment under this subsection (6)(d) to be made as an exercise of the police power of the Village.

(7) Tree Planting, Pruning, and Removal Permits Required

(a) Activities Requiring Permits. No tree shall be planted, pruned, removed or otherwise substantially altered by adjoining property owners in or upon any public street or place in the Village (other than by the Plan Commission or Village Forester) unless a written Tree Maintenance permit is first obtained from the Village. The permit application shall recite the name of the applicant the location of the property on which the regulated activities are to occur, and the nature of the proposed activities to be performed. If trees are proposed to be planted, the species and variety or cultivar shall be identified., and if trees are proposed to be pruned, maintained or removed, the purpose and details of the work shall be specified.

(b) All Proposed activities as outlined in Subsection (7)(a) shall be subject to approval and issuance of a permit by the Village Forester, and shall be further subject to standards and specifications for approved species, varieties and cultivars; for planting, and approved methods for pruning and tree maintenance as contained in the Village of Poynette Standards and Practices Manual All private contractors hired to Perform permitted tree care activities On Public trees shall carry current workers compensation insurance with limits of coverage as required by the State of Wisconsin for all employees, and shall have in force and provide certificates of general liability and property damage insurance with $1,000,000 limits of coverage.

8) Prohibited Trees and Tree Planting Restrictions

(a). The planting or propagation of certain trees at any place in the Village is absolutely prohibited. In making this prohibition the Village intends and does hereby exercise its police power. Species and varieties of trees to be prohibited from planting throughout the Village shall be specified in the Village of Poynette Standards and Practices Manual, which shall be made public and available to property owners upon request.

(b) Planting of low growing species in public spaces under public utilities is required. Trees planted under public utilities must be species or varieties which are no greater than 25' in height at maturity. An approved list of species and varieties for planting under utilities is contained in the Village of Poynette Standards and Practices Manual, information from which shall be made public and available to property owners upon request.

(9) Interference With Enforcement of Ordinance. No person shall delay or interfere with the Commission or Village Forester or any third person following proper direction of the Commission or Village Forester in complying with or enforcing any provision of this section.

(10) Penalty . The penalty for violation of any provision of this section shall be a forfeiture of not less than $25.00 nor more than $100.00, together with the costs of prosecution. Each and every day during which such violation continues shall be deemed a separate offense.