||How to Apply for a Tree Removal Permit|
The removal of any tree requires approval by the Building Official. Applications may be obtained from the Development Services Assistant. Information required on the application includes the location, size, and type of tree, and the reason for removal. There is no application fee. An application is not required if a tree is uprooted or severely damaged such that it creates a hazard to life or property that must be addressed immediately, or if the tree is specifically labeled as a protected tree and is proposed to be removed on a site plan for development approved by the city council.
A tree is considered protected if it has a circumference of 72 inches or greater, measured 4˝ feet above natural grade level, and is one of the species specified. Applications for removal of a protected tree are approved only under the following conditions:
- When the tree is so located as to prevent reasonable access to the property or as to preclude reasonable and lawful use of the property. Where removal of the tree would become unnecessary if a variance or special exception were granted by the Zoning Board of Adjustment in the application of the zoning ordinance, no application for tree removal will be approved except where such application for a variance or special exception is denied.
- When the tree constitutes a hazard to life or property which cannot reasonably be mitigated without removing the tree.
- When the tree is determined to be dying, dead, or diseased such that restoration to sound condition is no practical, or that its disease could be expected to be transmitted to and endanger the health of other trees. This condition must be documented at the applicant’s expense with an inspection and letter from a certified arborist.
Where removal of a protected tree is approved, a replacement tree may be required as a condition of approval.
If the application for removal of a protected tree is denied, the applicant may file a written notice of appeal to the Zoning Board of Adjustment within ten days of the denial of the application. The Board may affirm or reverse the denial, accompanied by findings of fact. If the Board fails to act within 30 days after the date the appeal is filed, the appeal is automatically granted as requested in the original application.
An applicant for removal of a protected tree whose application is denied by the Zoning Board of Adjustment may, within ten days after the date of the decision, file written notice of appeal to the City Council. The Council may uphold or reverse the determination of the Board, and shall either adopt or modify the finding of fact of the Board. If the Council fails to act within 30 days after the date the appeal to the Council is filed, the appeal is automatically granted as requested in the original application.
An application for removal of a non-protected tree is approved once the tree has been inspected by the Building Official or inspector, and verified as a non-protected tree.