[HISTORY: Adopted by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Franklin Lakes 2-14-1990 by Ord. No. 893 as Sec. 2-29 of the 1988 Code; amneded in its entirety 3-19-2013 by Ord. No. 1562. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
[Amended 4-21-2015 by Ord. No. 1623]
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 Borough, except state highways unless the New Jersey Department of Transportation shall assent thereto, and except county highways, parks and parkways unless a County Shade Tree Commission is operative and gives assent thereto, shall be exercised by and under the authority of the Borough Shade Tree Commission, which is hereby created. The Commission shall consist of seven members and two alternates appointed by the Mayor, who shall be residents of the municipality and shall serve without compensation.
The first Commissioners shall be appointed within 60 days after the effective date of this chapter, and their terms of office shall commence upon the day of their appointment and be for the respective periods of one, two, three, four and five years beginning on January 1 next succeeding such appointment.
The term of each appointee shall be designated in his appointment. All subsequent appointments, except to fill vacancies, shall be for the full term of five years, to take effect on January 1 next succeeding such appointment. In the event that membership of any Commission is increased, the new members shall be appointed in such manner that the terms shall expire in accordance with the foregoing.
Alternates shall serve a period of five years beginning January 1 of the year following their appointment. Alternates may participate in all of the Commission's activities but may not vote unless one of the regular members is absent. Alternates shall be designated "Alternate 1" and "Alternate 2." In the absence of one member, Alternate 1 shall vote; in the absence of two members, both alternates shall vote.
The Commission shall organize annually by the election of one of its members as Chairman and the appointment of a Secretary, who need not be a member. The salary of the Secretary, who may be compensated even if a member of the Commission, shall be fixed by the Borough Council.
Any vacancy occurring by reason of the death, resignation or removal of any Commissioner shall be filled for the unexpired term by the Mayor.
The Commission shall have the power to:
Exercise full and exclusive control over the regulation, planting and care of shade and ornamental trees and shrubbery now located, or which may hereafter be planted, in any public highway or park, except such as are excluded pursuant to § 118-1 of this chapter, including the planting, trimming, spraying, care and protection thereof.
Regulate and control the use of the ground surrounding the same, so far as may be necessary for their proper growth, care and protection.
Move or require the removal of any tree, or part thereof, dangerous to public safety.
Make recommendations to the Mayor and Council for the passage, alteration, amendment and repeal of ordinances necessary or proper for carrying out the provisions thereof.
Administer treatment to, or remove, any tree situate upon private property which is believed to harbor a disease or insects readily communicable to neighboring healthy trees and enter upon private property for that purpose with the consent of the owner thereof, provided the suspected condition is first confirmed by a certificate issued by or on behalf of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.
Review development applications before the Planning Board and Zoning Board and, when necessary, require new plantings by applicants within the public right-of-way where destruction or removal of existing trees and shrubs will occur or where no trees or shrubs are now in existence. If such applicants shall fail or refuse to comply with the requirements of the Commission, the Commission may forthwith proceed, after notice as herein provided of its intention to do so, to plant the same, and the initial cost of all such trees planted by the Commission, the cost of planting thereof and the cost of the posts and boxes or guards used for the protection thereof shall be charged against the tree bond, if any, and, to the extent the tree bond is not enough to cover such costs, shall be a charge upon the real estate on which such tree or trees shall be planted as an improvement thereof. Such cost, if it is so determined that it is to be paid by the owner, shall, unless paid directly to the Commission, be certified by it to the Tax Collector of the municipality and shall thereupon become and be a lien upon the real estate, shall be included in the next tax bill rendered to the owner or owners thereof and shall be collected in the same manner as other taxes against the property.