ATAG asks Urban Forestry Commission to report to residents on tree loss at Wakefield HS

Outline of ATAG request to the Urban Forestry Commission (UFC), during the public comments period of UFC’s June 28, 2018 meeting:

I support those who are concerned about the redwood in North Arlington.

In addition, I want to point to a problem in South Arlington that should also be of concern to the UFC:  Significant tree losses at Wakefield High School.

* Tree Stewards have reported that there are currently 25 dead/dying trees on the school grounds that are tagged for removal.

* Arlington Tree Action Group (ATAG) has documented a number of dead and dying trees at Wakefield HS.  Most appear to be relatively new trees.

So with the purchasing of these trees, planting the trees, maintaining the trees, and now removing and, presumably, replacing the trees, we may have a significant waste of Arlington public funds.

This is not an insignificant matter when we consider that the County is currently facing difficult financial circumstances.

And that’s in addition to the insult to South Arlington residents, and Wakefield students in particular, who have had this ugliness inflicted on them.

Mission of the Urban Forestry Commission (excerpt):

The UFC provides the County Board with advice and recommendations to improve the health and sustainability of Arlington’s urban forest, including:

* Programs and policies for the planting and maintenance of trees on public property.  

So the Wakefield tree loss is exactly the kind of thing UFC should be concerned about.

UFC should do its own review to determine:

* How did this happen?

* How much will this cost Arlington taxpayers?

* What lessons can we learn to make sure this does not happen again?

UFC should publish its findings for public review.


Bill Roos