Township of Plainsboro, NJ
Middlesex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Plainsboro 8-8-1983 as Ord. No. 0-83-14. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Shade Tree Advisory Committee — See Ch. 38.
Subdivision and site plan review — Ch. 85.
Zoning — See Ch. 101.

§ 94-1 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
PUBLIC TREE
Any living tree or shrubbery located on lands owned by the Township of Plainsboro or by any other governmental body within a public right-of-way.

§ 94-2 Prohibited acts.

No person shall do or cause to be done any of the following acts affecting the trees or shrubbery planted or growing naturally within the highways or within public places under the jurisdiction of the township, except with permission obtained from the Township Engineer:
A. 
Cut, trim, break, girdle, disturb the roots of or injure any living tree or damage, misuse or remove any structure or device placed to support or protect any tree.
B. 
Plant or remove any living tree or climb any living tree with spikes.
C. 
Fasten any rope, wire, electrical attachment, sign, reflectors or other device to a tree or to any guard around a tree.
D. 
Close or obstruct any open space around the base of a tree which permits the access of air, water or fertilizer to the roots of the tree.
E. 
Pile any building material or make any mortar or cement within six feet of tree.
F. 
Change the grade of the soil within the limits of the lateral spread of the branches of a tree (dripline).
G. 
Place any guy wire, brace, rope or other device on any tree in such a manner as to injure it.
H. 
Hitch or fasten an animal to a tree on any street or to any guard or support provided for a tree or permit an animal to bite or otherwise injure any tree.
I. 
Permit any brine, petroleum-based product or injurious chemical or liquid to come in contact with the trunk or roots of a tree on any street.
J. 
Operate or park heavy machinery, e.g., trucks, bulldozers, graders, etc., within the dripline of any tree as defined above or carry out scaping or excavation in any such manner as to expose or endanger the roots of such trees.
K. 
Place fill, gravel, sand or other such material within the dripline of any tree.
L. 
Build a fire or station any tar kettle or engine in such a manner that heat or noxious fumes will penetrate the dripline of any nearby tree.
M. 
Dam or obstruct any watercourse so as to result in flooding of adjacent treed areas or artificially change the water table near publicly owned trees.
N. 
Create impervious surfaces within the limits of the dripline.

§ 94-3 Public utility responsibilities.

A. 
Every person having control over any wire or cable for the transmission of an electric current along a street shall at all times guard all trees through which or near which such wire or cable passes and shall protect the tree from any injury from the wire or cable or from the electric current carried by it. The device or means used shall in every case be subject to approval by the Township Engineer. In addition, all utility companies or cable companies shall use proper horticultural practices when pruning trees.
B. 
The Township Engineer may grant to public utility companies a blanket permit for tree pruning for line clearance and for the installation and maintenance of subsurface and aboveground plant construction if there is interference with or endangerment to street trees.

§ 94-4 Relief from requirements.

Any person desiring relief from any of the above provisions may appeal to the Township Engineer, who, when practical, shall consult with the Shade Tree Committee prior to granting relief.

§ 94-5 Violations and penalties.

A. 
Any person found guilty of violating any provision of this chapter, upon conviction, shall be subject to the general penalty provision of the Township Code.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See § 1-15, General penalty, of Ch. 1, General Provisions.
B. 
Each day any violation of this chapter continues shall constitute a separate offense, as shall injury to or destruction of each tree without a permit.

§ 94-6 Administration and maintenance.

A. 
This chapter shall be enforced by the Township Engineer or such other person as the Township Administrator shall direct.
B. 
All tree maintenance must be approved by the Township or performed by the township or by a certified tree expert.