Township of Cherry Hill, NJ
Camden County
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[New]
The regulation, planting, care and control of shade and ornamental trees and shrubbery upon and in the streets, highways, public places, parks and parkways of the Township of Cherry Hill, except State highways, unless the State Highway Department shall assent thereto, and except County highways, parks and parkways, if a County Shade Tree Commission is operative and gives assent thereto, shall be exercised by the Department of Public Works.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Section 21-2, Duties in Relation to Shade Tree Protection, previously codified herein, was reserved by Ordinance No. 2002-15
[Ord. #64-21, § 4, 6-8-64]
As varieties of trees and growing conditions change the Department of Public Works shall be required to have available specifications on approved trees. The specifications are to be reviewed at least once annually. These specifications shall be kept on file in the Township Clerk's office.
[1]
Editor's Note: Prior ordinance history includes portions of Ordinance Nos. 74-10 and 74-31.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
The Township Council does herein decide and find that the indiscriminate, uncontrolled and excess destruction, removal, and cutting of trees upon lots and tracts of land within the Township has resulted in creating increased municipal costs to control drainage, and has further caused increased soil erosion, decreased fertility of soil, increased dust, which has deteriorated property values, and has further rendered land unfit and unsuitable for their appropriate use, with the result that there has been and will result in the future a deterioration of conditions affecting the health, safety and general wellbeing of the inhabitants of Cherry Hill Township and has caused the passage of this section to regulate and control the indiscriminate and excessive cutting of trees in the Township.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
No person shall cut or remove any tree nor shall any owner or occupant knowingly permit the removal of any tree in excess of fifteen (15") inches in circumference measured on the tree at a height of twelve (12") inches above the level of the ground upon any lands within the Township, unless the aforesaid is accomplished in accordance with the regulations and provisions of this section. Permits are required to remove both healthy and diseased or dead trees. The removal of diseased or dead trees requires certification by the Director of Public Works or his/her designee. In addition, any person desiring to clear an area greater than five hundred (500) square feet (no matter how small the trees, brush and/or vegetation may be) must obtain approval from the Planning Board (See subsection 21-4.5 below).
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
Trees and all vegetation in freshwater wetlands areas are protected by N.J.S.A. 13:9B-1 et seq., Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act Rules, Chapter 7A; enforced by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Neither the Department of Public Works nor the Planning Board will authorize the removal of trees in any wetlands area until a permit has been issued by the Department of Environmental Protection.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
a. 
Required. Any person desiring to destroy, cut, remove or trim more than thirty (30%) percent of any tree (healthy, diseased or dead) in excess of the aforesaid size shall apply to the Director of the Department of Public Works or his/her designee for a permit to remove the tree. The application for tree removal permit is hereby made part of this chapter.
b. 
Information Required. The applicant shall identify the land upon which the tree is located and shall disclose the name and address of the owner, tenant or duly authorized agent of the owner or tenant and shall identify the location of the tree sought to be removed, cut, or destroyed. The applicant must indicate any trees that have been removed from the property in the prior twelve (12) month period.
c. 
Site Review. The Director of Public Works or his/her designee shall review the site to determine whether the cutting, removal, or destruction of the tree shall impair drainage conditions, impair soil erosion, increase dust concentration, decrease the fertility of the soil or deteriorate the property value, destroy a buffer between residential and nonresidential uses, and shall further determine the overall physical conditions of the land and the deleterious effect thereon if any, in accordance with the standards set forth in this section. Prior to submitting the application, the applicant must identify the trees to be removed with a ribbon. The Department of Public Works will review previous files to confirm that no trees have been removed from the property in the previous twelve (12) months.
d. 
Appeal. Any applicant aggrieved by the action of the Department of Public Works as based upon criteria as listed above, may appeal the determination to the Township Planning Board, providing the appeal is taken in writing directed to the Secretary of the Planning Board within ten (10) days of the determination of the Department of Public Works. The Planning Board shall hear the appeal within thirty (30) days and may affirm, reverse or modify the determination of the Department of Public Works, setting forth a resolution, and the reasons for its result.
e. 
Removal of More Than Three (3) Trees. When the proposed removal of trees involves more than three (3) trees within a twelve (12) month period (except when declared to be a hazard or dead by the Director of Public Works or his/her designee), a site plan showing the location of these trees shall be submitted to the Township Planning Board for their review (See subsection 21-4.5 below). Upon receipt of this plan and review of the site conditions, the Planning Board shall hold a public hearing regarding the proposed tree removal and shall render their decision within thirty (30) days.
f. 
Issuance. If the application is not governed by the provisions of paragraph e above, the Director of the Department of Public Works or his/her designee shall issue a permit if the criteria of this section are met. A copy of the permit will be given to both the property owner and his/her agent.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
a. 
Upon receipt of an application for removal of more than three (3) trees or for the clearing of small trees, vegetation and/or brush over an area greater than five hundred (500) square feet, the Planning Board Secretary or his/her designee will visit the site, confer with the Director of Public Works, and issue a report. Upon receipt of the report of the Planning Board Secretary, the Planning Board shall hold a hearing upon notice to the applicant, the owner of the affected premises and persons within two hundred (200') feet of the affected premises. The notice to persons within two hundred (200') feet of the premises shall be the responsibility of the applicant and be conducted in the same manner as provided under the Township Zoning Regulations (by certified mail or hand delivery with affidavit of service, at least ten (10) days prior to the public hearing).
b. 
The Planning Board at its hearing, shall consider the following criteria (as listed in subsection 21-4.4 of this chapter) to determine whether the cutting, removal or destruction of the trees will:
1. 
Impair drainage conditions;
2. 
Impair soil erosion;
3. 
Increase dust concentration;
4. 
Decrease soil fertility;
5. 
Deteriorate property value;
6. 
Cause a deleterious effect on the land's physical condition;
7. 
Destroy a buffer between residential and nonresidential uses.
c. 
The Planning Board shall not permit removal of a tree unless the applicant proves that the removal of the tree will not have a negative impact on any of the criteria listed above or unless it determines that the continued existence of the tree will cause a hardship to the owner of the property or the occupant of the property where the tree is located, or endanger the public on the property where the tree is located, or adjoining property owner.
d. 
This section of the chapter shall not apply to any tree certified to be a dead tree by the Director of Public Works. It shall not apply to trees located in an area to be occupied by a building, driveway, street cart-way or recreational area shown on a plan approved by the Planning Board or Zoning Officer, locating all trees within relationship to the proposed improvements or within a distance of fifteen (15') feet around the perimeter of any such building, driveway, street cart-way or recreation area, unless a particular tree is determined by the Planning Board to be of particular value.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
No debris, limbs or other materials may be dropped upon any paved street, sidewalk or curb while in the course of cutting or removing any tree within the Township.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
Waste generated as a result of a contractor removing trees must be removed and disposed of at the contractor's cost at the time the trees are removed. Anyone receiving permission to remove a tree in the right-of-way must also remove the tree stump.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
The provisions of Chapter 21 will be enforced by the Zoning Officer of the Township or his/her designee. Any person who wishes to report what he or she believes to be unauthorized removal of trees should call the Department of Public Works to determine if a tree removal permit was granted. If the Department of Public Works has not authorized the tree removal, the complainant should call the Department of Community Development to speak with the Zoning Officer. The Zoning Officer or his/her designee will inspect and if possible photograph the property, document his/her findings, and if warranted issue a violation to the property owner.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
The provisions of Chapter 21 will be enforced by the Zoning Officer of the Township or his/her designee. Any person convicted of a violation of a provision of this section shall be liable to the penalty stated in Chapter 1, Section 1-5, for each offense (minimum one hundred ($100.00) dollars not to exceed one thousand two hundred fifty ($1,250.00) dollars). Cutting of each tree covered by this section, shall be considered a separate offense. In addition to a monetary fine, the Zoning Officer may request and the Municipal Court may grant a specific performance penalty. The violator may be required to replace the tree(s) removed or destroyed with new trees.
[Ord. #2002-15, § 1, 9-9-02]
a. 
The Director of the Department of Public Works may at his discretion remove or require the removal of any tree or part thereof, deemed dangerous to public safety.
b. 
The Director of the Department of Public Works may administer treatment to, or remove any tree situated on private property which is believed to harbor disease or insects readily communicable to neighboring healthy trees in the care of the municipality and enter upon private property for that purpose with the consent of the owner thereof, provided the suspected condition is first confirmed by certificate issued by and on behalf of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.
c. 
Private homeowner is responsible for the care of all trees on their property up to and including the curbline. Should a tree interfere with utility lines or sight lines or the flow of traffic, the Director of Public Works, other government agencies, or utility agency shall have the authority to trim or otherwise alleviate the interference.