Harris wants trees replaced sooner
Coun. Paul Harris wants to revisit the city’s tree replacement and urban forest policy after learning there’s a 26-year backlog for replacing dead and dying trees in Red Deer.
Harris said the existing policy and budget allows for the replacement of 50 trees a year.
“At the current rate they are going, it will take 26 years to catch up,” said Harris.
Harris was set to introduce a motion at last Monday’s council meeting but the meeting ran late so the motion is expected be read at the next meeting.
Harris said he is bringing the motion forward because of the concern he has heard in the community.
The motion calls on administration to “consider the financial and other community benefits of trees and develop a replacement and urban forest expansion strategy dealing with the 26-year deficit, provides for responsive replacement of trees and increases the urban forest over time.”
Harris would like to see the dead trees replaced within a season.
“When you think about the value of our community we are so connected to our green spaces and our parks,” said Harris. “Then to say it’s going to take 26 years to replace street trees that just isn’t congruent with who we are as a community.”
The motion is expected to be read at council on Sept. 3, opening the door for discussion on Sept. 16.