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Proposed Tree Bylaw

Full Disclosure I have only been presented an overview of a possible tree bylaw during a meeting of the Sustainability Advisory Committee. I have not read the entire bylaw nor do I support or oppose it at this time. I am simply wanting to start an open and honest dialogue with Ward 1 residents on their views for a tree bylaw.

Below I will outline some key points from the presentation:

Over the last 14 months a group of residents here in King Township have been meeting with Township staff to create a possible new and improved tree bylaw. For some context, a few years back Council voted to NOT adopt a restrictive tree bylaw that was enforceable throughout the entire Township. What a restrictive tree bylaw does is, not allow for the removal of healthy trees of a certain size in the township.

This approach drew much criticism from residents all over the township especially in rural areas for being much to restrictive and infringing too much on the property owners rights. It was brought to council and failed to pass.

In the new tree bylaw much of what was learned in the first bylaw attempt was taken into consideration and many aspects were changed, starting with the areas of enforcement. The only areas that would be under enforcement are the Villages (King City, Nobleton, and Schomberg). All the Hamlet and rural areas would not see any changes.

The second major change was the approach of the bylaw. Instead of being a restrictive bylaw it is now a permissible bylaw. This means that if a property owner in a Village area who would like to dispose of a mature tree (of a certain size and does not apply to small trees) on their property they can. Under the old proposed bylaw they would be unable to do so, hence being a restrictive bylaw.

Instead in the new permissive tree bylaw they are allowed to remove the tree but the property owner must replace it at a 3 to 1 ratio on their property or pay a replanting fee to the township so that 3 new trees can be planted on public lands. This does not apply to sick/dead trees.

The goal of the new tree bylaw is not to infringe on property rights, instead to protect and grow our canopy converge in the Village areas while being respectful to property owners rights.

Again, I have NOT seen the bylaw this was simply from a presentation that was given to the Sustainability Advisory Committee. I neither support or oppose this tree bylaw. I would just like to start an open and honest discussion with residents of Ward 1. So please do not hesitate to email or call me to chat.


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