Town Leans Toward Tree Ordinance Modification

A complete repeal of the $75 fee per tree removal seems unlikely after TOBAY officials met with residents and environmentalists.

The Town of Oyster Bay's second hearing on several code amendments Tuesday featured some vocal opponents of a tree removal law's repeal, with one Nassau County legislator reminding Town officials that the law's creation was in response to a real threat.

The ordinance, which charges a fee of $75 in the event a property owner wants a tree taken down, was drafted in 1973 after a vengeful developer cleared 15 acres of forest in Woodbury after his application was denied by the Town Board, noted Legis. Judy Jacobs.

Although the ordinance was amended in 2007, Supervisor John Venditto talked of repealing it after hearing residents' complaints that it was government intrusion on their properties. 

Jacobs urged the Board to modify the code rather than repeal it, and Venditto made the point that the word "repeal" need not be feared.

Jacobs responded, “If the hearing is on a repeal of a law, there is every reason for residents of the Town to be concerned. Repeal is a strong word, much stronger than modify. I urge you to have good heads, sit down, work together and draft a modification.”

The Board indicated Tuesday that it would work to rewrite the ordinance rather than abolish it after meeting with a group of environmentalists and residents.

Other speakers at the hearing included Ben Jankowski of the group Save the Jewel by the Bay, Pat Aitken of Friends of the Bay and Sea Cliff Village resident James Foote.

Reminders for this week:

  • TOBAY Beach's oceanside portion is open for swimming Sunday.
  • Friday is POW/MIA Recognition Day
  • The Fall Walking Program begins Monday; call 516-797-4125 ex. 3

Mark you calendars:

GAP fall/winter/spring registration 

When: Monday, 6:30-8:30 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Where: Syosset-Woodbury and North Massapequa Community Centers

Oyster Bay Harbor Fall Cleanup

When: 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m.

Where: Oyster Bay Harbor; call 516-677-5853


Gennaro D'Alessandro September 10, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Thank goodness some people with some sence where there to speak out. Trees are the only thing we have to give us clean air, shade on frequent hot spells, or perhaps you think a tube of sun screen can do it.Everyone talks green but so little is done and so much we need to fix. Be a tree hero it takes a few hours to cut a 75 year old tree down you do the math. The reason most villages were incorporated was to do just that, but thats all but forgotten now. This town is so different now then when my father moved us here in the 60s from queens. It seems we are over run with the very things we wanted to move away from.
Frances g. Mares September 11, 2012 at 06:32 AM
Shoeklan four all whom this may concerned. Believe true love hear the voice again, CAllin, 'Good, people helper always, "speak, Lord, for your servant hear special message like gwhen Eli told Samuel go back to bed, for you have allot work to do...All of GOD'S CREATURE from a mother"Earth, has a Ladybug, on a Sunflower wain four a season of all year and hour apear of a Butterfly chanting the words of the mothers heart, 'live,love,laugh, and only cry when Mother's call four creations need. Amen
Grifhunter September 11, 2012 at 08:23 PM
I didn't mind getting permission to take down a tree, or paying a nominal fee. I did mind having to drive to the Town facility to wait in line to process the application to knock down 3 dead hemlocks. This should be do-able ONLINE or by mail without the nonsense of a half day off from work. Cell phone camera photos, email, credit card and you're done, the 21st century way.


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