CITY OF BUDA AMENDED TREE ORDINANCE
Buda City Council recently approved amendments to the tree ordinance. The updated ordinance applies across the City and its ETJ (Extraterritorial Jurisdiction), including private property that impacts a Protected, Signature, or Heritage Tree. A Protected Tree is defined as a tree between 8” and 20” at breast height. Signature trees are between 20” and 30” at breast height, and Heritage Trees are 30” or more in diameter at breast height. A tree permit and mitigation is required for the removal of one of these trees.
Certain trees are exempted including dead or diseased trees that are deemed a threat to public health and safety.
New language has been added to the ordinance to address tree care based on Texas A&M Forestry Service standards. The amended ordinance establishes tree care, planting standards, and protections for trees located on property such as right of ways and parks.
Below are some highlights of the ordinance:
· Maintains tree mitigation requirements
· Prohibits trimming of Oak Trees from 2/1 - 7/1 unless overseen by an Arborist (to prevent Oak Wilt Disease)
· Requires tree protection when construction occurs in the root zone
· Establishes tree planting and care standards
· Identifies nuisance tress - dead/dying; obstructs traffic signs and passage of people or vehicles; threatens public health, safety, and welfare...may be removed upon approval by the City
· Property Owner is responsible for maintaining trees planted in the parkway so that trees do not obstruct pedestrians and/or vehicles
· Prohibit harm to public trees (no removal of public trees without permission, no attachment of cables, wires, or signs without City approval)
The following trees are exempt and may be removed without a permit : Dead or diseased trees; Hackberry; Eastern Red Cedar; Common Ashe Juniper: Chinaberry; Mesquite; Ligustrum; Chinese Tallow; and Bradford Pear. Unless it falls under one of the stated exemptions, an applicant must submit a Tree Removal Permit for the removal of a Protected, Signature, or Heritage Tree.
With the approval of the new ordinance, the City of Buda now meets the standards for the Tree City USA designation. Tree City USA is a national recognition program that began in 1976 and is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service and National Association of State Foresters. This effort has been undertaken in order to preserve and protect the natural beauty of Buda because of its lush tree canopy and heritage oak trees.
You can read the full ordinance here: City of Buda Amended Tree Ordinance