opposing SB 574 and HB 521, Tree and Timber Trimming, Removal and Harvesting,
which would preempt the ability of local governments across Florida
to enact and enforce ordinances to protect trees.
Senate Bill 574 and House Bill 521, both titled Tree and Timber Trimming, Removal, and Harvesting, would preempt the ability of local governments in Florida to regulate the trimming, removal, or harvesting of trees on private property. This means that all local tree protections would be voided. Then, no city or county would be able to protect trees in the future without explicit approval from the Legislature.
Trees are an important part of Florida communities. Trees improve the property value of nearby homes and businesses. Trees provide an important cooling affect, especially in urban areas. Trees slow rainwater, helping storm sewers and reducing flood risk. Trees clean air reducing both carbon dioxide and particulate matter.
Most significantly, trees have natural beauty providing immeasurable benefit to the people living near them.
Whether and how communities regulate tree removal should be a local question. Some communities may choose not to regulate trees because they do not face development pressure or are sparsely developed.
Other communities may choose to strictly regulate tree removal because they highly value their tree canopy and would risk losing it without rules to protect it.
In any case, each Florida community should be able to consider the benefits of its tree canopy and determine for itself whether and how to protect it. Both SB 574 and HB 521 would ban any local community from making these decisions and instead impose a statewide ban on rules that would protect Florida’s towns’ tree canopies.
Sign this petition to lend your voice to 1000 Friends’ advocacy against these short-sighted bills.
will share my Name, City, County, and State
with key Florida Legislators in relation to SB 574, HB 521 and related bills
that may arise during the 2018 Florida Legislative Session.