Haddonfield New Jersey 08033


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Haddonfield New Jersey 08033
Boards, Commissions & Committees : Shade Tree Programs | Historic Preservation Guide | Senior Citizen Center | DowntownHaddonfield.com | Volunteer

Boards, Commissions and Committees

Shade Tree Commission

SHADE TREE COMMISSION

Street
Sourwood
Ash Tree

The members are:

Robin Potter, Chair

Jane Elkis Berkowitz
Marjorie D. Coar
Ann R. Koelling
Deborah Troiani, Secretary
Elyse Crawford, Alt. I
Ralph Ciallella, Alt. II

THE LATEST ON HADDONFIELD TREES

NEW - BOROUGH TREE POLICIES

NEW - SHADE TREES AND CONSTRUCTION

SHADE TREE PROGRAM

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GUIDES TO TREE CARE

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SHADE TREE NEWS
Looking for a family activity? Take the Haddonfield Tree Tour

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HADD0NFIELD'S 2013 TRICENTENNIAL TREE PROGRAM RESULTS

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Autumn Tree
Elm Tree
Tulip Poplar

FAQ's ON BOROUGH TREE POLICIES

For general questions regarding the Shade Tree Commission review the list of Frequently Asked Questions below:

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WHAT IS THE MISSION OF THE SHADE TREE COMMISSION?  The mission of the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission is to provide safe town trees while replacing, maintaining and preserving existing Borough trees and overall tree canopy. Unless a tree is unsafe, sick or dying it will not be removed. The community is best served and town budget expenses are reduced by maintaining existing mature trees rather than removing and replacing them without just cause. New trees are chosen for their historical longevity, disease resistance, growth characteristics and beauty. Only the members of the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission and authorized Borough employees may decide whether a Borough-owned tree is healthy or still useful to the community.

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WHICH TREES ARE OWNED BY THE BOROUGH? Haddonfield Borough owns, maintains and is responsible for the approximately 9,000 trees planted along the streets within the Borough right-of-way and in the public areas of Haddonfield.  The Inventory of Borough Street Trees is available on this web page.  It lists the Borough-owned trees by address, their location and their approximate diameter.  In almost all cases, homeowners do not own the trees planted within the property between the street and the sidewalk, the so-called "park strip”.  In some cases, the Borough right-of-way may extend past the sidewalk onto areas often thought by residents to be private property. There are also some streets without curbs and sidewalks. These streets also have a right-of-way owned by the Borough, and may have Borough-owned trees planted in that right-of-way. The width of the right-of-way varies throughout the Borough. To determine any given right-of-way, consult your property survey or the Borough tax maps maintained by the Office of Tax Assessment.  The Department of Public Works can determine whether a specific tree is within the Borough right-of-way. For more information, read How to Identify and Measure a Borough Tree

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WHO IS THE SINGLE POINT OF CONTACT FOR BOROUGH TREES? 
The Superintendent of Public Works of Haddonfield is the primary point of contact for Borough tree issues.  The Borough Construction Office can advise residents regarding construction-related policies and procedures to the extent that planned construction may impact Borough-owned trees.


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WHO ARE HADDONFIELD’S SHADE TREE COMMISSIONERS AND WHAT IS THEIR AUTHORITY?
Shade tree commissioners are Haddonfield residents who volunteer their time to the preservation and maintenance of Haddonfield’s trees.  They work for and with the Borough in the oversight of Shade tree issues.  They act as facilitators for the residents and carry out annual tasks as outlined in the state-approved Haddonfield’s Community Forestry Management Plan, Haddonfield Community Forestry Management Plan (CFMP), 2012 - 2016. The Shade Tree Commission’s activities are governed by the Borough code, Section 56 and Section 135, updated most recently in 2014.  They are appointed to the commission by the Mayor. Their terms are for a period of five years. There are five regular members and two alternate members.


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WHEN DOES THE SHADE TREE COMMISSION MEET?? The Shade Tree Commission meets at 8:00am on the third Tuesday of the month, with the exception of July and August. There are no regularly scheduled meetings during that month; there will be appropriate public notice if any special meetings are scheduled. The meetings are held in room 102 of the Borough Hall. The public is invited and welcome. Homeowners with questions about shade trees are urged to attend these meetings. 


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WHICH TREES ARE REMOVED…WHY? There are many reasons why trees are removed.  Following is a small sample of reasons: trees that are badly damaged in a storm; trees that are badly diseased; trees that are dead; trees considered dangerous by the Shade Tree Commissioners or authorized Borough employees, i.e.: leaning excessively, badly rotted, etc… Only the members of the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission and authorized Borough employees may decide whether a Borough-owned tree is healthy or still useful to the community.  If you feel a tree should be considered for removal, please contact the Superintendent of Public Works. Click here to go to Public Works.


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WHICH TREES ARE PRUNED…WHY? There are many reasons why trees are pruned. Trees that in the opinion of the Borough appear be hazardous are pruned. Trees damaged in a storm may be "safety pruned" first and then removed at a later date. Some tree diseases can be abated by pruning; in this case, pruning is a priority to save the tree. Trees with limbs that obstruct walking on the sidewalk are pruned. Haddonfield residents are asked to call the Borough if you see a tree needing pruning. Haddonfield residents may not prune Borough-owned trees, unless specifically permitted in writing to do so by the Superintendent of Public Works or his designated representative. Click here to go to Public Works.

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MAY A RESIDENT PAY A PRIVATE CONTRACTOR TO REMOVE OR PRUNE A BOROUGH TREE?  It depends. In all cases the homeowner must make their request in writing to the Superintendent of Public Works. Please contact the Superintendent of Public Works with questions.

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WHEN ARE TREES REMOVED OR PRUNED? Issues of safety are addressed first in both instances. In general, trees are pruned in mild weather months while they are leafed out and removed during the winter after the leaves have fallen. To have a tree pruned or removed, contact the Superintendent of Public Works. If the situation is considered dangerous by the Borough the work will be accomplished quickly; if not, please allow up to one year for the work to be accomplished.


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WHEN ARE STUMPS REMOVED?Given budgetary constraints, stumps remain until the next year and in some cases, longer. Certain stumps can not and will not be ground by the Borough due to their close proximity to in-ground utilities such as water, sewer and gas pipes.


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HOW CAN I REQUEST A NEW TREE TO BE PLANTED?Because of budgetary constraints and the removal of diseased trees, the Borough has reduced sharply the number of trees planted annually.  In 2013, trees were funded by donations under the Tricentennial Tree Program.  In 2014 and 2015, a state grant, supplemented by additional private donations, funded the purchase and planting of new trees.  If you wish the Borough to plant a tree in front of your property in the future, please notify the Superintendent of Public Works.  The Shade Tree Commission sponsors the Commemorative Tree Donation Program. to promote the planting of trees in the downtown Business District.

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WHERE WILL NEW TREES BE PLANTED? Many factors go into the placement of new trees. Resident requests, existing stumps, location of underground utilities such as sewer, water and gas lines, location of above-ground utilities such as electricity and cable lines, proximity to other trees and the size of the park strip affect this decision. Shade Tree Commissioners are tasked to evaluate each street in their territory and make recommendations to the superintendent.


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WHAT TYPE OF TREES WILL BE PLANTED? Different trees species have different "habits" or growth characteristics. These characteristics are considered before a tree species is chosen for planting. Typically five to six varieties are chosen each year. Bio-diversity, canopy, ability to thrive in difficult growing conditions and the overall beauty of Haddonfield's streetscape are considerations in this decision. For more information, see the  Haddonfield Borough Tree Planting Species List.


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MAY I PLANT A TREE OF MY CHOOSING ON BOROUGH PROPERTY? It depends. The Borough plants and maintains shade trees in order to: create a cooler, more pleasant environment during the summer months, to enhance the economic value of the town’s residences and to increase the beauty and positive reputation of the town. Therefore, only certain tree species, those that are shade trees of proven hardiness will be considered. (For a current list of the trees approved for planting, see the Haddonfield Borough Tree Planting Species List . To plant a tree on Borough property, homeowners must make a request in writing to the Shade Tree Commission and be granted written permission prior to any planting on Borough property.  If a tree is planted without permission, the homeowner may be required to remove it.


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MAY A RESIDENT PAY A PRIVATE CONTRACTOR TO REMOVE OR PRUNE A BOROUGH TREE?  It depends. In all cases the homeowner must make their request in writing to the Superintendent of Public Works. Please contact the Superintendent of Public Works with questions.


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HOW ARE DISPUTES SETTLED? Should a dispute arise between an individual or entity and the Borough regarding shade trees, the following steps will be taken: (1) the homeowner will write a letter to the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission stating the facts and requesting a hearing at a regularly scheduled Shade Tree Commission meeting. (2) Members of the commission will review the facts at the next scheduled meeting and visit the site if necessary. (3) Depending on the circumstances in question, the commissioners will discuss the facts, come to consensus and render a decision at this or the next meeting. The decision of the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission is a final decision of the Borough of Haddonfield.

FAQs ON SHADE TREES AND CONSTRUCTION

For specific questions regarding the Shade Tree Commission, shade trees and construction in the Borough, review the list of Frequently Asked Questions listed below:

What is the Shade Tree Commission and the Borough’s authority regarding Haddonfield’s street trees?  The Shade Tree Commission, together with the Borough’s Construction Office and the Department of Public Works, work together to ensure that Haddonfield’s Borough-owned shade trees and Borough’s overall shade tree canopy is protected during the construction process, while assuring that homeowners can gain the necessary access for construction.  The Borough’s ordinance, Section 56, governs their work regarding Borough-owned trees.  Under Section 135, the Shade Tree Commission also advises the Planning Board with regard to certain trees on those properties being considered for subdivision.

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What types of injury can occur to trees during construction?
Trees can be injured directly by construction equipment damaging the tree trunk or tearing branches, and by roots being cut either intentionally or unintentionally.  If sufficient, the injury can affect the tree’s survival.  Trees can also become unstable and then must be removed if enough anchoring roots are cut.  Driving heavy equipment over roots or storing heavy equipment or construction materials on top of roots, particularly if the traffic close to the tree trunk,  can crack structural tree roots.  Finally, the weight of heavy equipment traffic and construction materials storage compacts soils, prevents roots from supplying the tree with needed oxygen and water, and can lead to tree death, particularly for mature trees.

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What permissions are required for construction near Borough-owned trees?  As part of obtaining a construction permit in Haddonfield, homeowners must complete a Tree Protection Certification Form, available in the Borough’s Construction Office.  The Form requires that homeowners certify that they have read the Haddonfield Shade Tree Commission Policy for Construction to Protect Borough-Owned Trees Further, homeowners must certify that they will comply with this policy and, if applicable, will protect the Borough-owned trees as required. 

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What happens if I do not get the appropriate permissions?  Section 56 of the Borough Code provides for a penalty of $1,500 per violation and a replacement assessment based on the diameter of the damaged or destroyed Borough-owned tree, up to $27 per square inch of the Borough-owned tree diameter, as measured approximately 4 feet above ground.  For example, the replacement assessment for a 10 inch diameter tree could reach $2,120; the replacement assessment for a 24 inch diameter tree could reach $12,208.  By contrast, the replacement assessments for permitted activities, including the permitted removal of Borough-owned trees, are much lower.  See the Fees, Penalties and Replacement Assessment Schedule for more information.  Depending on the circumstances, the Borough Construction Office may issue a stop work order until proper tree protection is in place.

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How do I know if I have a Borough-owned tree near my property?  Haddonfield Borough owns, maintains and is responsible for approximately 9,000 trees planted along the streets within the Borough right-of-way and in the public areas of Haddonfield.  The Inventory of Borough Street Trees is available on this web page.  It lists the Borough-owned trees by address, their location and their approximate diameter.  In almost all cases, homeowners do not own the trees planted within the property between the street and the sidewalk, the so-called “park strip”.  In some cases the Borough right-of-way may extend past the sidewalk onto areas often thought by residents to be private property.  There are also some streets without curbs and sidewalks.  These streets also have a right-of-way owned by the Borough, and may have Borough-owned trees planted in that right-of-way.  The width of the right-of-way varies throughout the Borough.  To determine any given right-of-way, consult your property survey or the Borough tax maps maintained by the Office of Tax Assessment.  The Department of Public Works can determine whether a specific tree is within the Borough right-of-way.  For more information, read How to Identify and Measure a Borough Tree.

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What must I do to protect any Borough-owned trees during construction?

The Shade Tree Commission has developed guidelines to protect Borough-owned trees during construction through the use of construction fencing.  Further, for those properties in Haddonfield with narrow frontage that prevents the use of construction fencing, there is an alternate procedure to protect Borough-owned trees located along the street.  See the Policy for Construction Fencing to Protect Borough-owned Trees for further details.  Please contact the Shade Tree Commission or the Department of Public Works if you have specific questions or concerns as you develop your construction plans.

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What if I need trimming of the Borough-owned trees in order to prevent damage during construction?

Please contact the Department of Public Works to request trimming prior to the construction process.  DPW will evaluate your request to ensure that the level and type of trimming requested will not endanger the tree and, if appropriate, will schedule the trimming.  If you require trimming before the DPW crew is available, DPW can give permission for qualified arborists to perform the specified trimming at the homeowner’s expense.

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What if I want a Borough-owned tree removed in order for construction to proceed?

This request and the specific tree to be removed should be indicated on the construction plan submitted to the Borough Construction Office, and Part I of the Tree Protection Certification Form completed.  The Shade Tree Commission will evaluate your request at the next meeting.  If permission is given to remove the tree, the STC will calculate the replacement assessment due based on the diameter of the tree in question.  Such permitted removal will occur at the homeowner’s expense.  See the Fees, Penalties and Replacement Assessment Schedule for more information.

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