Meeting Time: September 15, 2020 at 9:00am PDT

Agenda Item

The Board of Supervisors adopted Ordinance No. 4171 on October 22, 2019 establishing the requirements of a mandatory hazard tree removal program for trees threatening either roads and/or rights-of-way of County-maintained roads and improved public property. The removal of these hazardous trees will address numerous health and safety matters and promote the region's recovery from the Camp Fire. In addition, the Board adopted Ordinance No. 4181 on March 10, 2020 adding the requirement for hazard tree removal for trees threatening eligible private roads. Eligible property owners may comply by either: 1) submitting a Right-of-Entry permit to enter the Government Tree Program and allowing State contractors to identify and remove hazard trees; or 2) registering to participate in the Private Tree Program (Private Program) by submitting an Inspection Access Form and then identifying and removing their own hazard trees. Following the owner's identification and removal of hazard trees, a County-contracted Arborist makes a visual confirmation of the removal of the hazard trees. Both programs began accepting enrollments on October 28, 2019. Currently, 662 County parcels are complete in the Private Program. The County-contracted Arborists completed a visual survey of all properties in the Private Program from the road and it appears the remaining 947 properties in the Private Program have hazard trees present. The County contacted all property owners in the Private Program to confirm a visual inspection may take place in order to verify hazard trees are not present. The County-contracted Arborists estimate an inspection for each remaining property will be complete by mid-October. Additionally, 696 County properties are not enrolled in either program. The County properties that are not enrolled and those in the Private Program with hazard trees remaining will ultimately be declared a public nuisance and addressed with abatement or with other enforcement remedies if they do not comply with the requirement to remove hazard trees. The Government Tree Program is still accepting enrollments for property owners that are not able to identify and remove their own trees. The State may establish a final deadline for this program once tree removal begins. County Administration recommends the Board establish an enrollment deadline for the Private Program of October 30, 2020 and a complete tree removal deadline for the Private Program of December 4, 2020, which is before the typical wet season for Butte County. These deadlines are consistent with those established by the Paradise Town Council on September 8, 2020. Property owners in contract for tree removal may be given an extension to comply. These deadlines allow the property to be declared a public nuisance so abatement procedures may begin to address numerous risks posed by the hazards trees. (County Administration)