I’ve added the topic of tree-cutting in Renton to the Committee of the Whole agenda for a meeting in early January. I would like to consider requirements to put construction fences with signage around trees that are designated to be saved during development projects. I would also like to look at how we verify that people who get tree-cutting or clearing permits have the permission of the underlying property owners.
I’ll be open to suggestions from the public, tree-services, and builders when this comes before the council as long as everyone is focussed on productive methods to comply with the rules. I’m much more interested in preventing wrongful cutting than in trying to punish after-the-fact.
We already have a requirement that a substantial number of trees be saved when property is developed, but as I’ve seen (and many of you have seen) these requirements often do not seem to make it to the people in the field (or else they get ignored). We also have a requirement that people get permits to cut more than six trees.
I found it interesting that Seattle is also studying tree cutting, although their issues are a bit different than ours. It sounds like they currently do not even have the restrictions we have.
Here is the story about Seattle from today’s Seattle Times.