Town of Nantucket, MA
Nantucket County
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Annual Town Meeting of the Town of Nantucket 4-7-1981 by Art. 26, approved 11-6-1981. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 127.

§ 132-1 Height restrictions; notice and enforcement.

A. 
In order to preserve and promote the safety of the public, hedge or shrub or other growth on the corner lot or curb obstructing the view of motorists and situated within 15 feet of a public street, or curb- or side line thereof, shall not be permitted by the owner or occupant of the premises to exceed the height of three feet above road grade; any and all trees within said fifteen-foot area (shade trees are to be subject to the provisions of MGL c. 87, § 3) shall have limbs trimmed to the height of six feet above road grade, including that any growth overhanging public walkways shall also be trimmed to the property line at the owner's expense.
[Amended 4-2-1985 ATM by Art. 27, approved 8-12-1985]
B. 
The Department of Public Works (DPW) shall notify the owner of the property of a violation of this chapter by certified mail. If the violation shall not have been cured within 15 days of the date of mailing of the notice, the DPW shall have the right to enter upon the property and correct such violation.
[Added 8-29-1985 STM by Art. 4, approved 8-8-1986]

§ 132-2 Town tree designation.

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
Any tree will be designated a "Town tree" by meeting any one of the following conditions:
A. 
The tree was purchased, or its planting was paid for, by the Town.
B. 
The tree stands on or has its trunk partially on Town-owned property.
C. 
The tree was donated or otherwise conveyed to the Town.
D. 
The tree has been maintained more than once by use of Town funds, equipment or personnel during the last 20 years, with the visits separated by more than one year.
E. 
Town trees shall be marked with a medallion, the presence of which shall be conclusive of the status of the tree as a Town tree.

§ 132-3 Prohibitions; notice of removal; public hearing; recovery of damages.

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
Except as herein provided, Town trees shall not be cut, trimmed or removed, in whole or in part, by any person other than the Tree Warden or his deputy, even if he be the owner of the fee in the land on which such Town tree is situated, except upon a permit, in writing, from said Tree Warden, nor shall they be cut down or removed by the Tree Warden or his deputy or other person without a public hearing, and said Tree Warden or his deputy shall cause a notice of the time and place of such hearing thereof, which shall identify the size, type and location of the tree or trees to be cut down or removed, to be posted in two or more public places in the Town and upon the Town tree at least seven days before such hearing and published in a newspaper of general circulation in the Town in each of two successive weeks, the first publication to be not less than seven days before the day of the hearing; provided, however, that when a public hearing must be held under the provisions of this section and under MGL c. 87 prior to the cutting or removal of a tree, such hearings shall be consolidated into a single public hearing before the Tree Warden and the Planning Board, and notice of such consolidated public hearing shall be given by the Tree Warden or his deputy as provided herein. Any person injured in his property by the action of the officers in charge of the Town trees as to the trimming, cutting, removal or retention of any such tree, or as to the amount awarded to him for the same, may recover the damages, if any, which he has sustained from the Town under MGL c. 79.

§ 132-4 Cutting down or removing Town trees.  

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
The Tree Warden shall not cut down or remove or grant a permit for the cutting down or removal of a Town tree if, at or before a public hearing as provided in the preceding section, objection, in writing, is made by one or more persons, unless such cutting or removal or permit to cut or remove is approved by the Board of Selectmen.

§ 132-5 Cutting down, trimming or removing bushes and small trees.

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
A. 
The Tree Warden or his deputies, but no other person, may, without a hearing, trim, cut down or remove trees, less than 1 1/2 inches in diameter one foot from the ground, and bushes, standing in public ways; and, if ordered by the Selectmen, shall trim or cut down trees and bushes, if the same shall be deemed to obstruct, endanger, hinder or incommode persons traveling thereon or to obstruct buildings being removed pursuant to the provisions of MGL c. 85, § 18. Nothing contained herein shall prevent the trimming, cutting or removal of any tree which endangers persons traveling on a highway, or the removal of any tree, if so ordered by the proper officers for the purpose of widening the highway, and nothing herein contained shall interfere with the suppression of pests declared to be public nuisances by MGL c. 132, § 11, including the Dutch elm disease.
B. 
All hearings and proceedings herein pertaining to Town trees may be conducted simultaneously or in conjunction with any of the provisions of the Massachusetts General Laws that pertain to public shade trees.

§ 132-6 Town trees as public shade trees.

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
All Town trees shall be considered public shade trees within the meaning of MGL c. 87, § 1.

§ 132-7 Planting and maintenance policy.

It shall be the policy of the Town of Nantucket not to plant any tree on land not owned by the Town, or to expend any funds or other effort for maintenance of any tree which is not previously determined to be a Town tree, except by written permission of the owner of the land on which the tree is or will be situated, or as specified in § 132-5.

§ 132-8 Violations and penalties; enforcement.

[Added 4-13-1998 ATM by Art. 51, approved 7-31-1998]
Any violation of this chapter shall be punished by a fine of $300. This chapter shall be enforced by the Town Tree Warden. The Town Tree Warden may enforce this chapter by noncriminal disposition pursuant to § 1-1 of the Code.