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Posted on: December 18, 2019

Hazardous Trees on Private Property

This year you may have noticed a decline in the health of ash trees or other trees on your private property.  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. For the protection of you and your family, hazardous trees are required to be removed from private property as well.

In late August and early September 2019, 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 late December 2019, 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. 

To help keep yourself and your family safe, the December 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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