An ordinance crafted to protect “significant public” trees in Warren was felled by the Town Council Tuesday evening, Oct. 8.
The vote was 3-2 against the proposed Warren Tree Ordinance. It ends debate that dates back many months.
Voting against the ordinance were Town Council President Chris Stanley, Vice President David Frerichs and Town Councilor Catherine Tattrie. Town Councilors Joe DePasquale and Scott Lial favored the ordinance.
“I think this goes well beyond the original intent of protecting trees,” said Stanley of the 10-pae document. “It seems rather onerous. And using tax credits creates a slippery slope. I don’t see the need for this. I don’t see anybody chopping down trees.”
“I don’t think people should be compensated for preserving trees,” Frerichs said.
The ordinance would have created a Tree Commission to work with the town's Tree Warden and given a tax exemption of up to $5,000 to the owner of a “protected tree.”
It also would have required the need for a permit for planting, transplanting, pruning, applying chemicals, staking or disturbing any public tree or doing any construction within a tree’s drip-line.
The owner of a protected tree also could have applied voluntarily for a tax exemption to cover the cost of preserving and maintaining that tree, up to four trees. The easement would have carried over to subsequent property owners.