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Attorney general approves shade tree bylaw

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Attorney General Martha Coakley has approved the town’s amended bylaw on public shade trees, according to Town Clerk Mary Ellen Lannon. Town Meeting members in April approved the addition of a new section to Chapter 18 of the town’s bylaws to protect public shade trees. The bylaw defines public shade trees as “all trees planted within a public way or on the boundaries thereof.” Language included in the new section requires anyone who wants to remove or prune a public shade tree to submit a written request to the town’s tree warden, who will then hold a public hearing on the issue. Any person who asks that a tree be removed must also pay for the work — including expenses related to any required legal advertising, police traffic details, and inspection of the tree by an arborist — and cover the cost of planting replacement trees.

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