The purpose of this chapter is to promote and protect the public health, safety, and general welfare by providing for the regulation of the planting, maintenance, and removal of trees, plants and shrubs on city right-of-way or on any city or public property within the City of Travelers Rest.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § I, 11-18-2010)
The public works director shall have authority to administer the provisions of this chapter. He shall work under the general supervision of the city administrator.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § II, 11-18-2010)
This chapter provides full power and authority over all trees, plants and shrubs located within street rights-of-way, parks and public places of the city.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § III, 11-18-2010)
Species. Tree species shall be consistent with the recommended species for this region's climate.
Spacing and Location. The spacing of street trees will be in accordance with the accepted standards. No street trees other than those classified as small (thirty feet maximum height) may be planted under or within ten lateral feet of any overhead utility wire, or over or within five lateral feet of any underground water, sewer, or transmission line for any utility. Spacing of trees shall be in accordance with accepted practices given the tree size. Minimum distances shall be thirty feet for small trees, forty feet for medium trees, and fifty feet for large trees. Trees shall also be planted an appropriate distance from the sidewalk or curb. Minimum distances shall be two feet for small trees, three feet for medium trees, and four feet for large trees.
Topping. It shall be unlawful for any person, firm or city department to top any street tree, park tree or other tree on public property. Topping is defined as the severe cutting back of limbs to stubs within the tree's crown to such a degree so as to remove the normal canopy and disfigure the tree. 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 chapter at the determination of the public works director.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § IV, 11-18-2010)
The public works director has the authority to enter onto private property whereon there is located a tree, shrub, or plant that is suspected to be a public nuisance and to order its removal if necessary. Public nuisance shall be defined as any tree with an infectious disease or insect problem; dead or dying trees; a tree or limb that obstructs street lights, traffic signs, or the free passage of pedestrians or vehicles; a tree that poses a threat to safety. Property owners shall be notified of the violation and shall be given fifteen days from the date of notification to comply. Failure to comply shall subject the owner to a citation to be adjudicated in municipal court, subject to a maximum fine of five hundred dollars or thirty days imprisonment.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § V, 11-18-2010)
Violations. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter or who fails to comply with any notice issued pursuant to any provision of this chapter, upon being found guilty of violation, shall be subject to a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars for each separate offense. Each day during which any violation of the provisions of this chapter shall occur or continue shall constitute a separate offense. If the violation results in the injury, mutilation, or death of a tree, shrub or other plant located on city-owned property, the cost of repair or replacement, or the appraised dollar value of such tree, shrub, or other plant shall be borne by the party in violation. The value of trees and shrubs shall be determined in accordance with the latest revision of A Guide to the Professional Evaluation of Landscape Trees, Specimen Shrubs, and Evergreens, as published by the International Society of Arboriculture.
Assessment of Claim. In the event that a nuisance is not abated by the date specified in the notice, the public works director is authorized to cause the abatement of said nuisance. The reasonable cost of such abatement shall be filed as a lien against the property on which the nuisance was located. In addition, the owner of the property upon which the nuisance was located shall be subject to prosecution.
(Ord. No. O-11-10, § VI, 11-18-2010)