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Posted on: January 9, 2020

Hazardous Trees on Private Property

Hazardous Trees

In late August and early September 2019, Cedar Falls city staff conducted a windshield survey of private property in Cedar Falls and established a database identifying hazardous trees to notify property owners of requirements for removal. In early January 2020, approximately 500 letters will be sent to owners of private property that have one or more dead or declining tree(s), including those that have been damaged by the Emerald Ash Borer.

While city staff continues to remove public trees on the street right of way (the area between the sidewalk and curb) that are or will soon be a hazard, hazardous trees are also required to be removed from private property as well by the property owner.

To help keep residents safe, the January letter indicated all dead and declining trees need to be removed from private property no later than August 1, 2020, unless the property owner provides the city with a plan for removal in a timely manner. Trees not removed, or without a plan for removal, are subject to removal by the city and all associated costs, including administration, will be billed to the property owner.

For more information, please contact the Public Works Department at 319-273-8629.

About Hazardous Trees

City of Cedar Falls Ordinance Section 15-2 states: Nuisance defined; certain acts, conditions declared as nuisances. Whatever is injurious to the senses or an obstruction to the free use of property so as essentially to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property by the public or community shall be deemed a nuisance. Nuisances shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following: (20) “Trees infected with infectious disease as identified by the city arborist or operations and maintenance division manager; or any dead, diseased or damaged trees or plant materials which may harbor serious insect or disease pests or disease injurious to other trees or plant materials, or any healthy tree in such a state of deterioration that any part of such tree is likely to fall and damage property or cause injury to persons. The stump of any tree that is removed must be cut flush with ground level, unless the stump is made into a decorative, tasteful yard element.”

Learn more about the dangers of hazardous trees, including the effect of the emerald ash borer, in the below video. 

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