The preservation of trees and other vegetation and the related protection and maintenance of conservation easements have necessitated, and will continue to be given a good deal of attention. Beginning with the latter, many properties in the Village are subject to conservation easements which allow only the removal of dead trees, and which do not allow depositing any materials or construction within same. These easements were created for environmental and aesthetic reasons to protect the subject properties, neighboring properties, the environment, generally, and flora and fauna. Various means of enforcement include injunctive relief (i.e., cease and desist), monetary damages for tree and plant removal plus the cost to cure by replanting, and removal of dumped materials or structures. Unfortunately, either due to misinformation or indifference, the village has had to become more involved in enforcement activities. At the same time, a nine person Conservation Easement Committee has begun the work of cataloging all the conservation easements, ascertaining their present condition, and making recommendations with respect to enforcement and any possible changes.
The Village’s “Tree Law” relates to trees which are 4″ or bigger in diameter measured across their widest point, 4′ above the ground. No tree this size or larger may be removed without first obtaining a permit. The one exception is in an emergency, in which case an application must be made within 5 days of removal, or within 20 days if removal occurred due to damage caused by a major weather event, such as a hurricane.
There is no limit on the number of trees which may be removed if they are dead or likely to be dead within a year. However, sufficient proof will be required in order to obtain the necessary permit. In addition, landowners may remove, as of right after obtaining a permit, one tree per each 10,000 square foot of lot size per each two-year period, but not exceeding 8 trees in any two-year period or 12 trees in any six-year period.
All other cases of tree removal require application to the Planning Board which will determine on a one-to-one basis whether a Compensatory Planting (replacement trees) or Compensatory Payment (to the tree fund) will be required.
Please take particular notice of §176-7, Penalties for Offenses. A contractor who violates the Law can be fined up to $5000, and have his license revoked, and can also be fined for operating without a license. Landowners can be fined up to a total of $10,000 in addition to being required to replace trees removed unlawfully.
Tree Remove Applications
If you want to remove a tree on your property please download a tree removal application.
For a current list of approved Licensed Contractors for tree removal please contact Village Hall.