BPU’s tree trimming policy in ROW and easements (summary)

With the advice and consent of the city council, the Board of Public Utilities has adopted the following six tree trimming procedures to fulfill our mission of providing public safety and preventing service interruptions.

  • When we clear the distribution lines, we will use national norms for tree trimming and trim for a three-year growth cycle that is species-specific for the kinds of trees that are in the public right-of-way. Fast-growing softwood trees will be cut back more than slow-growing hardwood trees.
  • We will use a nationally recognized expert in tree trimming procedures and practices that protect the health of the tree. Dr. Alex L. Shigo's manual entitled "Approved Method of Tree Trimming for Natural Directional Pruning" describes the tree trimming procedures that our contractor will use while clearing the public right-of-way.
  • We will not top or round over trees that are directly under electrical lines.
  • We will clear fence lines of any volunteer tree growth since the last trim cycle.
  • The day of trimming, we will hang a card that lists these procedures on the customer's door. The card has a return address and space that the customer can use to make comments and mail the card back to us.
  • Vegetation removed during emergency trimming for storm restoration is not considered necessary trimming and as such, it is the tree owner's responsibility to properly dispose of any limbs. This also applies to the customer's overhead electrical service drop from the pole to the attachment point on the structure. Finally, if we find it necessary to do other trimming or tree removal on the customer's property (work that is other than routine cycle trimming), the customer will be notified prior to our doing any work. For assistance in planting the right tree in the right place, please call 913-573-9900 and leave your name and daytime phone number so that one of our representatives can contact you.
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