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Tree Conservation Legislation Strategy Session

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Tree Conservation Legislation Strategy Session ... 15.2-961. Replacement of Trees during Development Process ... Tree replacement is given more weight that ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Tree Conservation Legislation Strategy Session


1
Tree Conservation Legislation Strategy Session
  • How do we prepare for the next Virginia State
    Legislative Assembly?

2
Overview
  • Background
  • Present authority
  • Pressures and limitations
  • Recent legislative actions
  • Desired outcomes
  • Strategies and tactics
  • Whats missing?
  • Next Steps?

3
  • Present Authority
  • Direct
  • 10.1-1127.1. Conservation of Heritage,
    Specimen, Memorial and Street Trees
  • Indirect
  • 15.2-961. Replacement of Trees during
    Development Process
  • 10.1-562. Erosion and Sediment Control
  • 10.1-2100. Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act and
    the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation
    and Management Regulations 9 VAC 10-20-10
    through -230

4
Pressures
  • The ability of Virginias jurisdictions to meet
    Federal and State air and water quality
    regulations is dependent on their ability to
    protect and manage their communitys tree cover
  • Federal Clean Air Act
  • Regional and Local State Implementation Plans
  • Federal Clean Water Act
  • Chesapeake 2000 Agreement
  • Chesapeake Bay Act of Virginia State Code
  • Chesapeake Bay Regulations of Virginia State Code
  • Public Awareness especially in areas with rapid
    development

5
Limitations
  • Despite research demonstrating that trees
    provide significant ecological environmental and
    socio-economical benefits, present VA State Code
    that can be used to require tree preservation
    during land development is limited
  • Chesapeake Bay and Erosion and Sedimentation
    Control Code provide the legal basis for many
    local ordinances
  • Tree preservation is not primary focus
  • Water quality, erosion control is focus
  • Tree replacement is given more weight that
    preservation
  • Preservation of higher quality vegetation is not
    ensured
  • Heritage, memorial, specimen and street tree VA
    State Code does not provide for the preservation
    of forested tracts

6
Strengthening Enabling Authority
  • Attempts to strengthen tree conservation
    authority have failed repeatedly
  • The land development and wood products industry
    have influenced these legislative actions

7
  • Recent Legislative Proposals
  • Proposals to amend 15.2-961. Replacement of
    Trees during development process
  • 2002 session, Sen. Howell SB 484 (left)
  • 2002 session, Del Marshall HB 105 (continued to
    2003)
  • 2003 session, Sen. Howell SB 1013 (passed, but
    with no tree preservation)
  • 2004 session, Del. Sickles introduced HB 1479
    (left)
  • 2006 session, Sen. Ticer SB 246/236 (passed by
    indefinitely)
  • All considered by Committee on Counties, Cities
    and Towns
  • Proposal for DEQ to study tree-related measures
    in Clean Air Act state implementation plans to
    avoid loss of future federal transportation funds
  • 2005 session, Sen. Mims, SJ 343
  • Left in Committee on Rules

8
Desired Outcomes
  • Legislation that directly empowers jurisdictions
    to require the preservation of tree and forest
    resources in higher levels than that currently
    realized
  • Legislation that acknowledges the ecological
    environmental and socio-economical benefits
    provided by trees
  • Enabling language that communicates that it is
    lawful and reasonable for a jurisdiction to limit
    property development rights, especially where
    land development proposals (individually or
    collectively) could significantly impact the
    quality of life experienced by the community at
    large
  • Legislation that links to State and Federal
    environmental mandates

9
Desired Outcomes (the sequel)
  • Legislation is based on a predictable core
    mechanism
  • Legislation that is flexible, allows for
    modifications and deviations to facilitate other
    social and political considerations
  • Legislation that compliments efforts to conserve
    productive forest lands
  • Legislation that will not experience significant
    opposition by other jurisdictions or special
    interests groups
  • Legislation that meets the needs of all
    jurisdictions where it can be used

10
Questions Asked July 21, 2006
  • Who are the partners?
  • Who/what are the road blocks?
  • What other Bills are on the horizon?
  • What are pros and cons of statewide versus
    limited geographical application
  • Should we continue to pursue same amendment or
    generate new proposal?
  • Should we submit this year or what till 2008?
  • Should we link to air quality and non-attainment
    areas?
  • What are other jurisdictions/states doing?
  • How do we engage other jurisdictions?

11
Strategies and Tactics
  • Influencing state/local policy makers
  • Conduct regional ecosystem service analysis and
    combine into one report
  • Educate and engage private citizens and
    organizations
  • Letter writing campaign
  • Identify key members of VA Legislative Assembly
  • Meet with critical members
  • Letters to State Forester supporting UF program
    within VDOF
  • Find support within the building and wood
    products industry
  • Continue Building inter-jurisdictional consensus

12
What did we miss?
  • What other strategies can we use to promote
    stronger tree conservation legislation?
  • Should we attempt to identify/quantify levels of
    jurisdictional support?
  • How does Urban Tree Canopy Goals figure into the
    equation?

13
What are the Next Steps?
  • Linkage to Air Quality Plans is this possible,
    advisable?
  • How can we get more folks to participate?
  • How can we support each other?
  • Should work continue within subcommittee
    arrangement?
  • How soon should we start working on this?
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