HOPE Helping Our Peninsula's Environment
Box 1495, Carmel, CA 93921                     Info(at)1hope.org 
831/624-6500                                                                   www.1hope.org

(dd: The Council Ignored ALL of these suggestions.)

Pacific Grove Council Thursday, May 02, 2002

Re: Pacific Grove Tree Ordinance Revisions

There are very good parts to this revised tree ordinance.

How trees can improve human health, by absorbing air pollution and dust reducing stress, reducing climatic extremes. Buffer noise, reduce erosion, provides a windbreak and shade, and habitat from butterflies and birds, like woodpeckers, who need dead standing trees to live in.

We especially appreciate the city's recognition of and this ordinance's direction to leave such dead standing trees so woodpeckers can live here and recognizing that trees should be preserved simply because they are aesthetically beautiful!

Getting rid of the reference to poison ivy was a bonus.

1) LEAVE ROOT SIZE

Please retain the current root diameter at 2 inches for needing a permit, rather than weakening the law to allow roots up to 4 inches to be cut. There is no demand for this change in 12.16.130

2) ADD FOREST ECOLOGISTS

Please add "Forest ecologists and forest biologists" to those experts able to act on behalf of the city when the city forester is unavailable under section 12.16.120

3) IMPROVE NOTICE

The notice provision is inadequate. Please add to 12.16.140(e) "mailed notice to all residents and business owners within 2 blocks as well as property owners."

4) ALLOW FUND TO BUY LAND FOR NATIVE FOREST RESTORATION

The Tree Mitigation Fund only provides for planting trees on public property. Tree Mitigation Fund is inadequate under CEQA if the native replacement seedlings are planted offsite.

If we cannot save species in their native habitat

why could or would we possibly save them elsewhere?

Please enhance that to allow purchasing land for native forest and habitat restoration.

5) REPLACEMENTS LARGER

Replacement trees for cutting an 80 foot tree only need to grow to 15 feet and one inch high.

Please revise (12.16.060) so replacement trees should be able to grow to a similar height to the tree to be killed.

6) FUND CONTRIBUTION INCREASE

Its easily costs $1,000 to plant and maintain a tree until it is self-sustaining. The current $300 fee must be increased so the city does not lose money.

7) ARBORIST TRAINING

We strongly support the training and certification of arborists by our City Forester. To halt or slow the spread of dreaded Pine Pitch Canker they need to clean their tools with Hydrogen Peroxide or Chlorine bleach as recommended by the Pine Pitch Canker Task Force. Too many arborists do not clean their tools and are spreading the disease.

8) Miscellaneous

Under "Tree Permit" please add the word "paper" so it read "paper form on which permission is granted..." as it is ambiguous now.

9) Please replace "Cover" with "Canopy" in 12.16.200

10) Emergency exemption is too broad. Could get you in trouble with CEQA.

With all due respect,

David Dilworth, Acting Secretary