[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee (now Township Council) of the Township of Hillside 12-21-1971 as Ch. XVII of the 1971 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
No person shall do or cause to be done any of the following acts affecting the trees, shrubbery or ornamental material planted or growing naturally within the highways or public places under the jurisdiction of the township, except with a written permit first obtained from the Department of Public Works:
Cut, trim, break, disturb the roots of or spray with chemicals any living tree or shrub or injure, misuse or remove any structure or device placed to support or protect any tree or shrub.
Plant or remove any living tree or shrub or climb with spikes any living tree or shrub.
Fasten any rope, wire, electric attachments, sign or other device to a tree or shrub or to any guard about such tree or shrub.
Close or obstruct any open space provided about the base of a tree or shrub to permit the access of air, water or fertilizer to the roots of such tree or shrub.
Pile any building material or make any mortar or cement within six feet of a tree or shrub.
Change the grade of the soil within the limits of the lateral spread of the branches of any such tree.
Every person having control over any wire for the transmission of an electric current along a public highway shall at all times guard all trees through which or near which such wire passes against any injury from the wire or cable or from the electric current carried by it. The device or means used shall in every case be subject to approval by the Department of Public Works.
No person shall place any guy wire, brace or other device on any tree in such a manner as to injure it.
No person shall hitch or fasten an animal to any tree or shrub upon a public highway or to any guard or support provided for the same or permit an animal to bite or otherwise injure any tree or shrub.
No person shall permit any brine, gas or injurious chemical or liquid to come in contact with the stump or roots of any tree or shrub upon a public highway.
No person shall prevent, delay or interfere with any lawful work undertaken by the Department of Public Works or its authorized agent.
Removal required; notice. In case any tree or shrub, or any part thereof, along the public highway shall become dangerous to the public safety, the owner of the property in front of which such tree or shrub is located shall remove the same, or the required part thereof, forthwith upon service of written directive to that effect from the Department of Public Works. The notice shall be sufficient if served in the same manner as a summons may be served in accordance with the New Jersey Rules of Court.
Standard established. The owner or tenant of any lands lying within the township shall keep all brush, hedges and other plant life growing within 10 feet of any roadway and within 25 feet of the intersection of two roadways cut to a height of not more than 21/2 feet. This shall not require the cutting down of any trees where there is vision through the trees at a height of between 21/2 feet and eight feet from the ground.
Removal by township. If the owner fails to remove the tree or shrub or portion thereof within two weeks after service of written notice to do so, the work shall be performed by the Township Committee under the supervision of the Department of Public Works, who shall certify the cost thereof to the Township Committee.
Unpaid costs to become lien.
[Amended 6-3-1992 by Ord. No. G-320-92]
Upon receipt of the certified costs, the Township Committee shall examine the same and, if determined to be reasonable, shall cause such cost as embodied in the certification to be charged against the lands. The amount so charged shall forthwith become a lien upon the applicable lands and shall be added to and become part of the taxes next to be assessed and levied upon the lands, the same to bear interest at the prevailing tax rate and shall be collected and enforced by the same officer and in the same manner as taxes.
Any person who illegally engages in the cutting down or pulling down of a tree, irrespective of whose direction or supervision such act was done pursuant to, shall be subject to a fine of $1,500 for each separate violation.
If any person shall continue to violate any of the provisions of this chapter after being duly notified of such violation or shall neglect or refuse to comply with any lawful order of the Township Committee, the failure to comply with a second or each of any subsequent notifications or orders shall be construed as an additional violation of this chapter, and each such additional offense shall subject the offending party, upon conviction, to the same penalty as provided for the first offense.