UPDATE: Call Your Legislators TODAY to OPPOSE ‘Tree Bill’

Posted on December 19, 2018 by Dene Westbrook

UPDATE: This bill is on the House agenda today (Dec., 20, 2018) as a potential addition so it is very important that you contact your state Representative today and tell them to vote against this legislation.

The Michigan Municipal League needs your urgent help TODAY to oppose a bill that drastically changes how you can regulate trees and vegetation in your communities. It’s extremely important that you contact your state Representative today and tell them to vote NO on Senate Bill 1188, the Vegetation Removal Preemption Act, aka the tree bill!

(Revised text from original post): The bill has been added to today’s (Dec. 20) House agenda (even though it didn’t get enough support in committee) so a vote could happen today before Lame Duck ends.

The following are talking points you can use when communicating with your legislator: The bill was taken up in committee and did not have support to be voted out.

  • The overly broad reach of the bill impacts more than just trees. It will have destructive consequences for storm water management and water quality.
  • Legislation is a statewide approach to a very singular issue in one community where the property owners ignored the site plan approval process, ignored getting a permit…ignored local ordinances. Support for the bills would affirm such action is looked on favorably by the Legislature.
  • The bill voids reasonable local regulations put in place to protect quality of life and property values for all residents and businesses.
  • The legislation would create uncertainty in the development process. This undermines the MEDC’s Redevelopment Ready Communities program that’s telling municipalities to have clear, concise rules and regulations.
  • The bill will increase private development costs by requiring more time to get through the development process due to negotiating voluntary development agreements that currently are plainly stated regulations. It would also require the use of more gray infrastructure (underground pipes and drains) instead of allowing green infrastructure (natural vegetation) to be required. These increased costs will ultimately be passed on to the local tax payer.
  • Legislation completely undermines a municipality’s ability to address local matters of concern, and importance, within their community. 

View our blog posts on this issue herehereand here.

For additional information contact the League’s Jennifer Rigterink at [email protected].

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