March 01, 2005

For the last six months a group of citizens comprised of neighborhood representatives selected by Tampa Homeowner’s and Association (THAN), local developers, urban foresters, and landscape architects have been meeting with Councilwoman Linda Saul-Senaand city staff to review and make recommendations for revisions to the Tree and Landscape Code. The committee has made recommendations to streamline the code and to clarify and add to the technical manual that has not been updated since 1987.Most of the discussion has revolved around enforcement. The committee agrees that the City doesn’t have sufficient staff to keep up with the pace of development. Hopefully, the City will take note and used some of the income from increased fees to hire more inspectors.

The committee continues to meet. Some of the changes include:Change to grand tree measurement designation to 34”diameter. No point system.Change to protected trees from 4”diameter to 10”diameter.Establishment of a “landscape mitigation fund”. An “in lieu of”fund similar to the Tree Replacement Fund. Recommended changes will be reviewed in a public hearing at a date to be determned.