Town of Mamaroneck, NY
Westchester County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Mamaroneck 7-17-1985 by L.L. No. 10-1985 (Ch. 76A of 1975 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Boards and commissions — See Ch. 5.
Conservation areas — See Ch. 77.
Environmental quality review — See Ch. 92.
Fire prevention and building construction — See Ch. 106.
Flood damage prevention — See Ch. 110.
Freshwater wetlands — See Ch. 114.
Site plan review — See Ch. 177.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 190.
Zoning — See Ch. 240.

§ 207-1 Findings; purpose.

[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
A. 
The destruction or damage to shade, ornamental and evergreen trees and plants and the indiscriminate and excessive cutting of these trees in subdivisions and on private property causes barren and unsightly conditions, creates increased surface drainage problems, increases municipal costs to control drainage, impairs the stability and value of improved and unimproved real property and causes deterioration to the community which adversely affects the health, safety, environment, ecosystems and general welfare of the inhabitants of the Town of Mamaroneck. This chapter seeks to correct these conditions.
B. 
“Environmental Planner” means the person serving in that capacity. If the position of Environmental Planner is vacant, or if the Environmental Planner is unable to perform the tasks of that position, the Town Board may appoint another Town employee or a consultant to perform the tasks required to be performed under this chapter.

§ 207-2 Cutting or destruction of trees restricted; exceptions.

[Amended 7-17-1996 by L.L. No. 14-1996; 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
A. 
No person, firm or corporation or individual connected with such firm or corporation shall either purposely or negligently cut down, kill or otherwise destroy or commit any act which will lead to the eventual destruction of any tree exceeding six inches in diameter at a height of four feet measured from the ground on any private property unless he is in the possession of a permit to do so issued by the Environmental Planner pursuant to § 207-4. Permits issued for any other purpose by the Town shall not be valid for this purpose. A lot of 20,000 square feet or less substantially developed with improvements and a structure or structures situated thereon shall be exempt from this section.
B. 
Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, any property owner applying for subdivision or site plan approval whose plans would require the removal of any trees on said property shall make application to the Planning Board of the Town of Mamaroneck, which shall have sole jurisdiction regarding the proposed removal of such trees. The Planning Board may grant or deny such application on such terms and conditions as it may- prescribe, it being understood that there must, in any event, be full compliance with Chapter 190, Subdivision of Land, and Chapter 177, Site Plan -Review, of the Code of the Town of Mamaroneck. In the event that a property owner, subsequent to the filing of a final plat or site plan, shall require the removal of any trees which deviates from the plans approved by the Planning Board, application must be made to the Environmental Planner and all the requirements of this chapter shall be applicable.

§ 207-3 Additional duties of Environmental Planner.

[Amended 11-28-1990 by L.L. No. 6-1990; 9-25-1991 by L.L. No. 8-1991; 5-15-1996 by L.L. No. 12-1996; 4-22-2003 by L.L. No. 12-2003; 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
In addition to its other duties as provided for in this chapter, the Environmental Planner shall advise the Town Board in its selection, purchases, placement, and planting of trees and shrubs on municipal property and shall maintain an inventory and management plan for the continued maintenance and improvement of municipal plantings.

§ 207-4 Criteria for removal of trees.

[Amended 5-18-2005 by L.L. No. 8-2005]
A. 
Permits for the removal of trees may be granted under the following circumstances:
(1) 
If the presence of trees would cause hardship or endanger the public or the person or property of the owner.
(2) 
On property to be occupied by buildings or structures, within a distance of 10 feet around the perimeter of such building or structure, depending upon tree species and conditions to be determined by the Environmental Planner.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
(3) 
If the trees substantially interfere with a permitted use of the property, and the removal of the trees shall be performed in a selective manner.
(4) 
If the property shall have an approved cut or fill of land deemed by the Environmental Planner to be injurious or dangerous to the trees.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
(5) 
Where the trees to be removed are dead or so substantially diseased that, in the opinion of the Environmental Planner, the tree constitutes a potential danger.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
B. 
Notwithstanding Subsection A of this section, if the Environmental Planner determines that a tree is hazardous to life or property, it may grant a permit for the immediate removal of such tree without having to follow the procedures or requirements set forth in Subsections A, B, C, F and G of § 207-6 of the Code or § 207-10 of the Code.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
C. 
The determination of the Environmental Planner shall be final and shall depend upon the species of the tree, the degree of injury and the likelihood of the survival of the tree and consideration of the general welfare and the overall environment of the area, except that it shall be subject to such review as is authorized by § 207-6H.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]

§ 207-5 Qualifications for issuance of permits.

[Amended 5-18-2005 by L.L. No. 8-2005; 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
Starting in 2018, at least once every five years, the Environmental Planner shall take a course, at the Town's expense, from an organization whose educational purposes include dendrology (the science of trees). Such course must include an introduction in determining the health of trees. Anyone hired to replace the then current Environmental Planner shall take such a course by no later than December 31 of the year following the year of that person's appointment and thereafter shall take such course at least once every five years.

§ 207-6 Tree removal permit procedure; bond.

[Amended 2-6-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991; 9-5-2007 by L.L. No. 9-2007; 8-17-2011 by L.L. No. 8-2011; 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
A. 
All applications for permits hereunder shall be made in writing and verified under oath upon forms prescribed by the Environmental Planner and approved by the Town Board of the Town of Mamaroneck. The fee for each application is as set forth in § A250-1 and is payable upon submission of the application.
B. 
The applicant shall submit plans showing existing and proposed contours at two-foot intervals on a map or plan, at a scale no smaller than one inch equaling 50 feet. Where trees are to be removed or destroyed, existing trees, specifying types and sizes, shall be shown and the reasons for removing or destroying said trees shall be set forth. The plans shall provide for new trees to be planted and shall specify their location and type to replace the existing trees in kind. When the existing trees are so large and mature that they cannot be replaced, the Environmental Planner may require planting of multiple trees instead. On substantially wooded lots (lots containing 30 or more trees per acre meeting the requirements of § 207-2A), the Environmental Planner shall have the discretion of waiving the requirement of replacement of each tree in kind or payment of a fee.
C. 
The Environmental Planner may require additional information such as the design of walls, disposition and design of storm drainage and any other information pertinent to the individual circumstances.
D. 
Where extensive tree cutting is planned, the Environmental Planner may require the applicant to pay for an Inspector to be assigned by the Environmental Planner to supervise the orderly development of the land and ensure the protection of the trees.
E. 
The Environmental Planner shall require that the applicant or applicant's representative who shall be performing the work shall furnish the Town with a performance bond as approved by the Counsel to the Town in an amount sufficient to cover 90% of the planting and restoration work to be completed in accordance with the plans accompanying the application. The remaining 10% of the cost of restoration and replanting shall be in cash, deposited in a special tree preservation escrow account. The total amount of the bond and cash deposit shall reflect all restoration and protection costs and shall be in accordance with each set of individual circumstances. Upon completion of all planting and restoration work to the satisfaction of the Environmental Planner, the performance bond shall be canceled and replaced with a maintenance bond to be approved by the Counsel to the Town and to run for a term of two years. The ten-percent cash in escrow shall remain on deposit with the Town until the maintenance bond is canceled.
F. 
The Environmental Planner, within 20 days from the date the application is submitted in final form, shall approve or disapprove the application for permit. No trees shall be cut pursuant to a validly issued permit for a period of 10 days from the date of the issuance of said permit. The failure to act upon the application for permit within said 20 days shall be deemed a granting of automatic approval by the Environmental Planner of the application for permit.
G. 
All decisions or determinations made by the Environmental Planner approving applications pursuant to this chapter shall be sent to property owners within a two-hundred-fifty-foot radius of the area in question and to the Planning Board.
H. 
Any person, firm, organization or corporation entitled to receive notice of a decision or determination made by the Environmental Planner has the right to appeal that decision or determination to the Board of Appeals, which may affirm, annul or modify that decision or determination. Notice of that appeal must be in writing, must be accompanied by the appellant's reasons for annulling or modifying the Environmental Planner's decision or determination and must be received by the Environmental Planner no later than the 14th day after the notice of a decision or determination was mailed to the appellant. The Environmental Planner's decision and determination shall be stayed until the Board of Appeals decides the appeal or the appeal is dismissed or withdrawn. The decision of the Board of Appeals on that appeal shall be filed with the Environmental Planner.
I. 
Any person aggrieved by a decision of the Board of Appeals, may apply to the Supreme Court of the State of New York for review of that decision by a proceeding brought under Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules. Such proceeding must be instituted within 30 days after the decision of the Board of Appeals is filed with the Environmental Planner.
J. 
The Environmental Planner may revoke any permit if the work is not proceeding according to permit.
K. 
If an applicant is required to obtain a building permit for construction on the applicant’s property and if the proposed construction calls for trees on the applicant’s property to be cut down and if the applicant satisfies the criteria for a permit to remove certain trees so that the proposed construction can proceed, the permit to remove those trees shall not be issued until a building permit for the applicant’s proposed construction is issued.

§ 207-7 Tree removal; restoration.

A. 
All persons who remove or cause to be removed trees with or without a permit, as required, shall restore the area by backfilling all holes and by creating an acceptable grade and covering, subject to approval by the Environmental Planner. Any tree damaged during construction or development of the property shall be either replaced in kind or, where existing trees are so large and mature that they cannot be replaced, the Environmental Planner may require the planting of multiple trees instead. Minor tree damage shall be repaired in accordance with accepted tree surgery practice.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
B. 
Tree stumps shall be removed, not cut flush. After the planting of trees, removal of all debris in the disturbed area shall be made immediately. The property where such planting is done must be left in a neat and orderly condition with good and acceptable planting and tree surgery practice. On substantially developed lots, the Environmental Planner shall have the discretion, when it is not reasonably feasible to maneuver stump removal equipment to the location of a stump or where the stump is in close proximity to existing structures, to modify the provisions of this subsection with regard to stump removal.
[Amended 2-6-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
C. 
All trees which fail to survive for a period of two calendar years following planting shall be replaced by the permit holder at no expense to the Town or the owner of the land, if other than the holder of the permit. Said replacement shall be within 60 days following written demand for such replacement from the Environmental Planner or within an extended period of time as may be specified. Should the permit holder fail to replace the trees pursuant to demand within the required period of time, the Environmental Planner shall have the right to declare the maintenance bond in default and apply the escrow cash deposit and the proceeds of the bond to replace the required trees.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
D. 
All tree planting, tree dressing and associated restoration work must be substantially completed within six months from the date of issuance of the permit except that the permit may be extended by the Environmental Planner, which shall have the sole discretion to grant such an extension. Under all circumstances, the performance bond obtained by the permit holder shall continue in full force and effect until there has been full compliance and approval of all restoration work by the Environmental Planner. In the event that planting and restoration work has not been substantially completed within six months and no permit extension has been applied for or granted, the Environmental Planner shall have the right to consider the site abandoned and declare the performance bond in default and may apply the escrow deposit and the proceeds of the bond to perform all required planting and restoration work. By accepting a permit, the holder thereby agrees to this procedure and grants unconditional access to the land for such restoration purposes.
[Amended 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]

§ 207-8 Certificate of occupancy.

[Amended 10-16-2002 by L.L. No. 10-2002; 3-15-2017 by L.L. No. 4-2017]
No certificate of occupancy shall be issued by the Director of Building Code Enforcement and Land Use Administration until all tree planting, tree dressing and associated restoration work shall be completed to the satisfaction of the Environmental Planner except that, where a certificate of occupancy is applied for between October 31 and April 1, the permit holder shall submit an agreement, in writing, to the Town signed by the permit holder to ensure compliance with all planting and restoration work to the satisfaction of the Environmental Planner on or before the first day of May next following the making of the agreement. The escrow cash deposit and the bond obtained by the permit holder shall continue in full force and effect until the planting and restoration work has been completed. Should the permit holder fail to complete the restoration work on or before May 1 next following the execution of the agreement, the Environmental Planner shall have the right to declare said performance bond in default and apply the escrow cash deposit and the proceeds of the bond to restore the land.

§ 207-9 Enforcement.

[Amended 10-16-2002 by L.L. No. 10-2002]
The Director of Building Code Enforcement and Land Use Administration of the Town of Mamaroneck shall enforce this chapter.

§ 207-10 Removal of trees on town-owned land.

A. 
No department, agency, commission or authority in the Town of Mamaroneck, employee of the Town of Mamaroneck or any firm or individual retained by the Town shall propose to or shall cut down, kill or otherwise destroy more than five trees, each exceeding six inches in diameter at a height of four feet measured from the ground, within an area of 2,500 square feet, or any single tree exceeding 18 inches in diameter at a height of four feet measured from the ground on Town property, with the exception of Town highways within the Town of Mamaroneck, without first filing a statement with the Town Board.
(1) 
The statement required hereunder shall be made, in writing, to the Town Board on a form approved by the Town Board. Such statement shall specify the particular type of work to be performed, the exact location, a general description of the tree or trees that shall be removed and a sketch plan, if appropriate and required, together with the reasons for the removal of said tree or trees.
(2) 
Upon filing said statement with the Town Board, notification shall be sent to owners of record of land within a radius of 250 feet from the tree or trees that are to be removed. In addition thereto, notice of the proposed removal of said tree or trees shall be published in the official newspaper of the Town of Mamaroneck.
(3) 
The Town Board shall be stayed from making any decision or determination for a period of 10 days from the date of publication. In the event that any person, firm, organization or corporation aggrieved, affected or interested in the removal of said tree or trees shall file an objection with the Town Board, in writing, five days prior to the Town Board meeting, said Town Board shall not make any decision or determination until its next regular or special Town Board meeting following the filing of said objection.
B. 
All contracts entered into by the Town with firms or individuals for work to be performed on town-owned land, excluding Town highways, shall contain a provision that there shall be complete compliance with § 207-10A of this chapter.

§ 207-11 Penalties for offenses.

A. 
Any person, firm or corporation violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of an offense, the fine for which shall not exceed $1,000.
[Amended 7-17-1996 by L.L. No. 14-1996]
B. 
Civil penalty. In addition thereto, any person, firm or corporation violating any provision of this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty enforceable and collectible by the Town in the amount of $100 each and every day that the violation continues, for each and every tree. In addition thereto, the violator will be required to replace each and every tree so taken down in accordance with § 207-7.