IBJNews

Anderson loses 'Tree City' status after 21 years

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

If a tree falls in the forest and no one's there to hear it, does it make a sound? What about a Tree City?

After 21 years, Anderson has quietly lost its status as a Tree City USA, a title awarded by the Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with other state and national organizations to recognize cities with viable tree management plans and programs.

Anderson's title, first granted in 1991, appears to have been lost due to issues with paperwork. According to Anderson Tree Commission president Tami Coleman, the information she needed to file — including the budget, number of trees planted, pruned and removed — wasn't available.

But whatever the reason, she said, it's a hit.

Tree City status is more than a "whimsical title that cities and towns acquire merely to plaster onto signs at their gateways," she told The Herald Bulletin. "This award reflects the commitment of local government to recognize and fund the essential green infrastructure services that make our communities livable and resilient."

More so, it gives communities a workable tree management plan, she said, as outlined by the program's four main requirements: First, they must have a tree-care ordinance and a tree board or department — which Anderson has, respectively, via the city's regulations for tree spacing, pruning, planting and removal and the volunteer Tree Commission.

Tree Cities must also establish a community forestry program with an annual budget of at least $2 per capita — about $110,000 for Anderson. According to Coleman, it's possible Anderson could have met that requirement, but, "it would have been by the skin of our teeth."

The last requirement is that the cities have an Arbor Day observance and proclamation, which Anderson has. Friday, city officials and members of the Tree Commission observed the tree holiday in Gen. Pulaski Park, where they planted a Carpinus caroliniana, a Hoosier state native better known as the American Hornbeam.

Mayor Kevin Smith, who helped plant the tree, said he encourages "good arborist practices and activities," including reforesting neighborhoods and tending to vacant properties.

But Anderson's not perfect, he said. The city's urban tree canopy — the layer of tree leaves, branches, etc. covering the ground when viewed from above — is 19.3 percent, well below the state average of 24.58 percent, according to a 2010 report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

"We can't keep operating the same way we always have," he said. "But I think we have a tremendous team now that's really focused on proper urban care. We'll continue to work toward that goal." He said that includes getting Anderson's Tree City status reinstated.

"We'll have it back next year," he said.

According to the Arbor Day Foundation, the title comes with perks, including boosted public image, which is good for attracting tourists, businesses and new residents. It also adds to community pride, publicity and could even mean financial aid, since the Foundation sometimes gives preference to Tree Cities when passing out grant money for trees or forestry programs.

As of this year, there are more than 3,400 Tree Cities nationwide and 65 in Indiana. According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, last year Hoosier Tree Cities planted more than 14,500 trees, removed 15,800 damaged or dead ones and pruned 45,357.

"When you read through the list of Indiana Tree Cities, you'll see not only the hotshot Indianapolis suburbs straining to attract new people and corporations," Coleman said. "You'll see lots of large and small communities that think their people want and value trees, period. Is Anderson one of those communities? The ATC thinks so and we're working hard to bring it back."

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Hello Dear Are you tired of Seeking Loans and Mortgages,have you Been Turned down constantly By your banks and Other Financial Institutions or Micro Finance scheme. This is let you know with 100% guarantee that we Offer loans ranging from $1,000 Minimum to $1,000,000.00 Maximum at 3% interest rate per Month. We give out LOANS for developing business. a competitive edge/business expansion. email address: michealscottloan124@gmail.com We offer the following kinds of loans and many more; * Personal Loans ( Unsecured Loan) * Business Loans ( Unsecured Loan) * Consolidation Loan * Combination Loan * Home Improvement * Xmas Loans for contact to seek for loan email this email address: michealscottloan124@gmail.com Thanks

  2. My name is Mr Henry Josh and i live in the USA California and life is worth living right now for me and my family and all this is because of one man sent by GOD to help me and my family, i once had a life filled with sorrow because my first SON needed a kidney transplant and all our savings were going towards his medications and this normally leaves us with no money to pay our bills or even put enough food on our table and our rent was due and no funds to pay these bills and life felt so unfair to me and every night my wife will cry herself to sleep every night until one day, i was browsing through yahoo answers and i saw a striking advert of a man that gives out personal loans and that the offer is opened to all and i have heard so many things about internet scams but at this point of my life, i was very desperate and ready to take any risk and at the end of the day, i applied for this loan and from one step to another, i got my loan within 12 hours through bank transfer and you know, it was all like a dream and i called Mr Daniel Jones A Man who is the GOD sent lender i found and said, i have received my loan and he smiled stating that to GOD be the glory and i was so shocked as i have never ever seen anyone with such a GOD fearing and kind heart and today, i am the happiest man on earth because by GOD’S grace, my SON kidney transplant was successful and today he is healthy, i and my family are living very comfortable and happy and if you are in my former situation or in serious and legitimate need of a loan, you can reach this GOD sent lender via fidelityloanfirm@outlook.com

  3. Greetings to everyone reading this comment!!! I am Greg William by name. I am out here to recommend the effort of Mark Oscar,I was in need of a consolidation loan amount of 50,000 and as soon as I got in contact with Mark Oscar Loan Firm on Wednesday last week and on Friday last week as well I receive an alert from my bank(Royal Bank of Scotland Group) that the fund was transferred,I want everybody on this site to contact Mark Oscar now via email on how to get a loan because I got my loan from them and I am very happy,so contact them now. Oscarloanfinance@hotmail.com Thanks!!!!!!

  4. Elected officials, like Mourdock, get vested in 8 years. It takes 10 years for all other public employees, most of whom make a lot less money. So much for the promise to finish out his term.

  5. Great state treasurer and a good man!! Just curious if the folks who didn't quite understand his quote would like to tell my daughter-in-law that God didn't intend her! Mourdock's comment was correct but twisted and the article didn't mention that his opponent and the press let the impression stand that Mourdock meant that the rape was intended. Stupid people!!

ADVERTISEMENT