§ 15-276. Findings of fact and statement of purpose.  

Latest version.
  • (a)

    The board of county commissioners has determined that requirements for protection of trees in the unincorporated area of the county are not only desirable, but are essential to ensuring the health and general well-being of the community and that the required use of such restrictions is a proper use of the police powers. The general removal of trees should be appropriately controlled and where possible, existing trees should be preserved on-site as property is developed.


    The Orange County Comprehensive Policy Plan Conservation Element policy 1.12.1 states: "Orange County shall augment its protection of vegetated resources in urban areas, including but not limited to the tree protection ordinance. This action would ensure that high quality trees would receive greater protection in the development review process, require preservation of valuable tree species, prohibit indiscriminate clearing, require replacement and maintenance measures, and establish ratios for replacement if removal is unavoidable."


    The requirements of this article generally maintain a balance between important environmental concerns and compatible development. In so doing they:


    Allow development while encouraging the establishment of an acceptable amount of tree coverage on public and private lands within unincorporated Orange County.


    Maintain existing trees in a healthy and non-hazardous condition through good arbor practices.


    Establish and maintain appropriate diversity in tree species and age classes to provide a healthy and sustainable urban/suburban forest.


    Trees are proven producers of oxygen, a necessary element for the survival of mankind; they reduce the level of carbon dioxide in the air, dilute air pollutants and reduce noise.


    Trees play a pronounced and important role in countywide soil conservation, soil enrichment and erosion control.


    Trees enhance the value of property by providing a valuable psychological and visual counterpoint to manmade changes during land development and urbanization.


    Trees provide wildlife habitat and play other important ecological roles.


    Trees make the county more visually and aesthetically attractive to existing and prospective residents and visitors in addition to enhancing the community's sense of place.


    Trees screen and absorb pollutants including but not limited to dust, traffic noise and other pollutants.


    Trees protect the community from climatic extremes by providing shade and windbreak protection and by moderating temperatures within neighborhoods, parking lots, etc.


    Trees reduce the quantity of surface runoff and reduce the velocity of erosion and sediment transfer.


    Trees help purify stormwater runoff by removing nutrients prior to the runoff entering the aquifer.

(Ord. No. Code 1965, § 19A-14; Ord. No. 85-33, § 1, 12-9-85; Ord. No. 2001-19, § 2, 11-6-01)