Village of Kings Point, NY
Nassau County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of Kings Point 11-19-1986 by L.L. No. 9-1986. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Brush, grass and weeds — See Ch. 60.
Freshwater wetlands — See Ch. 91.
Parks — See Ch. 109.
Property maintenance — See Ch. 117.
A. 
The Board of Trustees of the Incorporated Village of Kings Point hereby finds that there is a direct relationship between the preservation and planting of trees, shrubs and associated vegetation in sufficient numbers in the Village of Kings Point and the health, safety and welfare of Village residents and that trees, shrubs and associated vegetation are related to the natural, scenic and aesthetic values and the physical and visual qualities of the environment which the Village is obligated to protect. Trees and such vegetation reduce noise, provide welcome shade to Village residents, preserve the balance of oxygen in the air by removing carbon dioxide and fostering air quality and create a bucolic and rural atmosphere in the Village, especially along the roads. Trees also stabilize the soil and control water pollution by preventing soil erosion and flooding, yield advantageous climatic effects and provide a natural habitat for wildlife.
B. 
The destructive and indiscriminate removal of trees and related vegetation causes increased Village costs for proper drainage control, impairs the benefits of occupancy of existing residential properties and impairs the stability and value of both improved and unimproved real property in the area of the destruction and adversely affects the health, safety and general welfare of the residents of the Incorporated Village of Kings Point.
For the purposes of this chapter, the following terms, phrases and words shall have the following meanings:
APPLICANT
The owner, contract vendee or lessee of the real property or its duly authorized agent.[1]
HABIT
The natural growing characteristics of any tree or specimen tree which includes branch spread and distribution, branch height above ground and root spread and distribution.
PERMIT
Any approved tree removal application, written official document, or verbal order given by the Superintendent to allow the substantial alteration of a tree.
[Added 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019]
PERSON
Any resident of the Village of Kings Point or any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company, public agency, public utility or organization of any kind or agent thereof.
REAL PROPERTY
Includes all unimproved and improved real property within the Incorporated Village of Kings Point.
SPECIMEN TREE
Any living, woody plant of the following species, if said plant shall have a height which is 24 inches or more above the ground at the base of the plant:
[Amended 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 3-2004]
A. 
Deciduous trees:
Ash (Fraxinus)
Birch (Betula)
Black Locust (Robinia)
Coffee Tree (Gymnocladus)
Elm (Ulmus)
Flowering Cherry (Prunus)
Flowering Crab Apple (Malus)
Flowering Dogwood (Cornus) (governed by state law)
Hawthorne (Crataegus)
Hickory (Carya and Hickoria)
Honey Locust (Gleditsia)
Hornbeam (Carpinus)
Horsechestnut (Aesculus)
Japanese Pagoda Tree (Sophora)
Linden (Tilia)
Magnolia (Magnolia)
Maidenhair (Ginkgo)
Maple (Acer)
Mountain Ash (Sorbus)
Oak (Quercus)
Plane Tree (Platanus)
Sassafras (Sassafras)
Service Berry (Amelanchier)
Sweet Gum (Liquidambar)
Sycamore (Platanus)
Tulip (Liriodendron)
Tupelo (Nyssa)
Walnut (Juglans)
Willow (Salix)
Yellow Wood (Cladrastis)
Zelcova
B. 
Evergreen trees:
Arbor Vitae (Thuja)
Cedar (Chamaecyparis and Thuja)
Douglas Fir (Pseudotsuga)
Fir (Abies)
Hemlock (Tsuga)
Holly (Ilex)
Pine (Pinus)
Spruce (Picea)
Yew (Taxus).[2]
SUBSTANTIAL ALTERATION
Any of the following, which, in the opinion of the Superintendent, endangers the health of a tree or significantly impairs its size or natural symmetry:
[Added 6-16-1987 by L.L. No. 4-1987; amended 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019]
A. 
The cutting down, removing, or other destruction of a tree.
B. 
Any other cutting, pruning, topping, or elevating of a tree.
C. 
The burying of a tree’s roots and trunk with dirt, soil, gravel, mulch, sand, impervious material, or otherwise.
SUPERINTENDENT
The Superintendent of the Village Building Department or such Superintendent’s designee or such other person designated by the Village Board of Trustees to exercise the powers and discretion provided for the Superintendent in this chapter.
[Added 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019]
VILLAGE
The Village of Kings Point.
[Added 6-16-1987 by L.L. No. 4-1987]
[1]
Editor’s Note: The former definition of "Building Inspector," which immediately followed, was repealed 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019.
[2]
Editor’s Note: Former Subsection C, Shrubs, was repealed 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019.
[Amended 11-19-1986 by L.L. No. 11-1986; 6-16-1987 by L.L. No. 4-1987; 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991; 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 3-2004; 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019]
A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to substantially alter a specimen tree without a permit.
B. 
It shall be unlawful for any person who owns or occupies real property to cause, suffer, permit, or allow the substantial alteration of a specimen tree on that property without a permit.
C. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to substantially alter any tree if said tree has a diameter of six inches or more at a point that is four feet six inches above the ground at the lowest point of the base of the tree without a permit.
D. 
It shall be unlawful for any person who owns or occupies real property to cause, suffer, permit, or allow the substantial alteration of a tree on said real property if that tree has a diameter of six inches at a point that is four feet six inches above the ground at the lowest point of the base of the tree without a permit.
A. 
Application for a permit shall be made to the Building Inspector.
B. 
The application shall be made on such form as may be prescribed by the Building Inspector and shall include but not be limited to the following:
(1) 
The name and address of the applicant.
(2) 
The purpose of proposed removal or alteration.
(3) 
The site of proposed removal or alteration.
(4) 
A sketch or plan of the area indicating the following:
(a) 
An outline of existing heavily wooded areas on the site showing the tree and specimen tree type and range of sizes.
(b) 
The location and size of trees or specimen trees to be removed.
(c) 
The location of any improvements on the real property.
(d) 
A license authorizing the Building Inspector, the Village of Kings Point and its designees to enter upon the property which is the subject of the application to administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter and to replace trees, if necessary, pursuant to § 147-7 of this chapter.
[Amended 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
(5) 
The name and address of the owner.
[Added 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
(6) 
The signatures of the applicant and the owner.
[Added 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
(7) 
Such additional data, drawings and surveys as the Building Inspector deems necessary to a review of the application.
[Added 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
C. 
The decision of the Building Inspector shall be based upon the following criteria:
(1) 
The condition of the trees or specimen trees with respect to disease and danger of falling, proximity to existing or proposed structures and interference with utility services.
(2) 
The necessity of the removal or alteration of the tree or specimen tree in question.
(3) 
The effect of the removal or alteration thereof on ecological systems.
(4) 
The character established at the proposed site of removal or alteration with respect to existing vegetation management practices.
(5) 
The impact of any removal or alteration upon existing screening of any road or highway bordering the property.
D. 
Any permit issued hereunder may be revoked and all work authorized by said permit halted if the Building Inspector shall find that the permit was obtained by false or misleading statements or the work being performed is not proceeding in accordance with the terms of the permit and the provisions of this chapter.
[Added 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989]
E. 
A permit issued pursuant to this chapter shall expire six months from and after the date of its issuance. No work may be performed under an expired permit.
[Added 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989]
[Amended 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991; 2-8-2000 by L.L. No. 3-2000; 11-27-2007 by L.L. No. 8-2007]
The application fee herein shall be established from time to time by resolution of the Board of Trustees.[1] The fee shall be paid upon submission of the application and shall not be refundable except with respect to trees that the Building Inspector determines are either substantially dead or are so diseased, damaged, uprooted or otherwise affected that they are, or may reasonably be believed to soon become, a danger to persons or property.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. A162, Fees.
[Amended 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
A. 
Private property. Any tree growing on real property which constitutes a danger to a public street or public place or the public using the same or which in any way endangers the usefulness of a public sewer or utility lines or which by reason of infestation or blight endangers other trees in the Village shall be removed or the habit thereof altered by the owner of said real property as directed by the Building Inspector. In the event that the property owner fails to comply with the directive of the Building Inspector within the time specified by him, the Village may then take the action directed by the Building Inspector and assess the cost thereof against the property owner. The directive from the Building Inspector shall be in writing, shall clearly state the source of the danger, the action to be taken, the date by which such action must be taken and shall be served on the owner of the real property personally or by certified or registered mail, return receipt requested, addressed to said owner at the last address for said owner on the tax records of the Village. If served by mail, the notice shall be deemed received three days after the notice is deposited in a depository maintained by the United States Postal Service.
B. 
Public property. Nothing herein shall limit the authority of the Superintendent of Public Works of the Village or his designee to remove or alter the habit of any tree on public property which he deems necessary to protect the health, safety and welfare of the Village residents.
[Amended 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991; 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 3-2004; 10-15-2018 by L.L. No. 10-2018; 10-10-2019 by L.L. No. 10-2019]
A. 
As a condition to the issuance of a permit under this chapter, the Superintendent shall require replacement trees to replace the trees to be substantially altered. The applicant and the owner of the real property affected shall each be responsible for planting replacement trees as specified in the permit.
B. 
Any person who substantially alters a tree, and any person who solicits, requests, commands, importunes, or intentionally aids another person to engage in the substantial alteration of a tree, and any owner or occupant of real property who causes, suffers, permits, or allows a tree on said property to be substantially altered in violation of this chapter shall plant replacement trees.
C. 
The number of replacement trees shall be equal to the total inches in diameter of all of the trees to be replaced, measured at a point four feet six inches above the ground at the lowest point of the base of the tree, as determined by the Superintendent, divided by six. All replacement trees shall be deciduous specimen trees unless otherwise specified by a Village board. The size of the tree shall be no less than three inches in diameter. The location where it shall be planted, and the date by when it shall be planted, shall be determined by the Superintendent. In the event that a tree has been so substantially altered that the Superintendent cannot accurately determine such total diameter, the Superintendent shall estimate such total diameter based upon such information as the Superintendent may have. Replacement trees shall be documented as part of a submittal for tree permit approval.
D. 
Based upon the health of the tree being replaced, and the number and location of other trees on the real property affected, or the approval granted by any Village board, the Superintendent may require fewer replacement trees than otherwise required by this section.
E. 
In order to guarantee the planting of replacement trees required pursuant to this section, the Superintendent may require the applicant or property owner to deposit with the Village a sum of money to be held as a deposit for liquidated damages in the event that the applicant or property owner fails to plant a replacement tree in accordance with the directives of the Superintendent. Such sum, as determined by the Superintendent, shall be equal to twice the cost of the purchase and planting of all of the required replacement trees. Because the loss to the Village of the natural, scenic, and aesthetic values and the physical and visual qualities of substantially altered trees by the failure of the applicant or property owner to plant the required replacement trees cannot easily be determined, 2 1/2% of the deposit shall be taken as liquidated damages by the Village for each day after the last day specified by the Superintendent for the planting of all of the replacement trees has past. For good cause, the Superintendent may, from time to time, extend the last day for planting. Such liquidated damages may be taken by the Village each day after that last day for planting has past or at any time thereafter.
F. 
Any trees required to be planted pursuant to this section shall be maintained in good health for not less than five years from planting, and if, in the sole discretion of the Superintendent, they are not in good health, they shall be replaced substantially in kind, as selected and directed by the Superintendent, by the owner of the property.
G. 
In addition to the liquidated damages provided for herein, each day after the date set by the Superintendent to plant a replacement tree that such tree is not planted shall be deemed a separate and distinct violation of this chapter by each of the person or persons obligated to plant such tree.
[Added 12-18-1991 by L.L. No. 3-1991[1]]
All trees on property on which demolition, excavation, grading or construction activity is conducted shall be guarded with a substantial fence at all times when any of said activities are taking place. The fence shall be at least four feet high and shall completely enclose the trunk of the tree at a distance from the trunk equal to the greater of six inches for each one inch of the tree's diameter at a point one foot above grade at the base of the tree, or four feet. On application of the owner or the owner's agent the Building Inspector may waive the necessity of the fence for one or more trees where he finds that distance, existing natural features or man-made structures afford adequate protection for such tree or trees. No person shall conduct any demolition, excavation, grading or construction activity on a property without erecting and maintaining thereon the fences above required.
[1]
Editor's Note: This local law also provided for the renumbering of former §§ 147-8 and 147-9 as §§ 147-9 and 147-10, respectively.
A. 
Any person aggrieved by an act or determination of the Building Inspector in the exercise of the authority herein granted shall have the right to appeal to the Board of Appeals, the decision of which shall be final and conclusive.
B. 
An appeal shall be in writing, stating the decision appealed from and the reasons for the appeal.
[Amended 6-20-1989 by L.L. No. 12-1989; 3-26-1991 by L.L. No. 1-1991]
A. 
The Building Inspector shall administer and enforce the provisions of this chapter. In the absence or inability of the Building Inspector to perform said duties, the same shall be performed by an Assistant Building Inspector or other person designated by resolution of the Board of Trustees of the Village of Kings Point.
B. 
Penalties.
[Amended 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 3-2004]
(1) 
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter shall be deemed guilty of a violation under the New York State Penal Law and, upon conviction thereof, shall be subject to:
(a) 
A fine of not more than $5,000 for each tree illegally removed, destroyed or substantially altered; a fine of not more than $5,000 for each replacement tree not planted; and a fine of not more than $5,000 for any other such violation; or
(b) 
Imprisonment for a term of not more than 15 days; or
(c) 
Both such fine and such imprisonment.
(2) 
Each such violation shall constitute a separate offense and shall be punishable as such hereunder."
[Added 11-18-2004 by L.L. No. 3-2004]
A. 
In the event that any property owner or any other person performing work with the consent, express or implied, of the property owner shall violate any provision or condition of any permit or other approval of an application from any department, board, or committee of the Village by removing, destroying, or substantially altering the habit of a tree, or by suffering, permitting, or allowing the removal, destruction, or substantial alteration of the habit of a tree on such property, such permit or other approval shall be suspended. Such suspension shall continue and no further action shall be taken pursuant to such approval, until such person shall apply to the departments, boards, and/or committees which granted such permits or approvals for modifications thereof based upon the removal, destruction, or substantial alteration of the habit of such tree or trees. Upon such application, such departments, boards, and/or committees may modify such permits or approvals by implementing such conditions, including, but not limited to, the requirement that one or more new trees of the same height and/or caliper as the illegally removed tree or trees be planted and maintained for a specific period of time, not to exceed five years, or such other condition or conditions as such departments, boards, and/or committees might deem appropriate. Such conditions may also include a prohibition of any further work on such property until the replacement tree or trees have been planted and that a declaration of covenants and restrictions be recorded by the owner of the property, running with the land, to assure that such conditions with regard to such replacement trees shall be enforceable against all future owners.
B. 
Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this section, the Building Inspector shall have the authority to authorize and/or direct that the property owner and/or any other person performing work with the consent, express or implied, of the property owner take such actions as in the sole discretion of the Building Inspector are reasonable and/or necessary to maintain the property in a safe condition and to assure that all relevant stormwater, sediment and erosion control, and tree protection measures are implemented and maintained, and that such other actions, as the Building Inspector may determine to be in the best interests of the Village, are implemented and maintained until such application has been made, a decision thereon has been rendered by such departments, boards, and/or committees, and the additional conditions, if any, of such departments, boards, and/or committees have been implemented.