Slight revision to Langley Township tree-cutting policy

People on smaller Brookswood lots will be able to cut two trees without any penalty, under changes adopted by council.

Langley Township council has approved a slightly-altered version of the temporary ban on clear-cutting in Brookswood and Fernridge.

The change sets a two-tree minimum allowable cut, so people with small lots and few trees can avoid a technical violation of the bylaw that bans cutting more than eight trees or 20 per cent of trees on a property, whichever is less.

Councillor Bob Long described the altered version of the bylaw as a “housekeeping update.”

The debate provided an opportunity for bylaw opponents to renew their criticism.

Councillor Grant Ward said creating a clear-cutting ban that only applies to Brookswood and Fernridge effectively renders the people who live there “second-class” citizens, compared to other areas of the Township.

“The people who live in Brookswood-Fernridge are good people,” Ward said.

“They know how to manage their property.”

Councillor Charlie Fox said he would be voting for the update of the already-approved bylaw, but he remains opposed to it in principle and he believes the regulations will be difficult to enforce due to a lack of “24/7” bylaw enforcement officers.

Fox repeated his call for a public hearing process to consult residents about a tree protection bylaw.

“This is a tricky and sensitive issue,” Fox said.

Councillor Steve Ferguson, a supporter of the clear-cutting ban, said he has personally witnessed wholesale clearing of forested lots near his home.

“Yes, indeed, it has happened,” Ferguson said.

The revised bylaw passed with Ward opposed (Councillor Kim Richter, who first proposed a ban, was away).

The interim clear cutting ban also allows trees to be removed if they are blocking sight lines under the Township’s highway and traffic bylaw or for a septic field or water well.

Trees can be cut down for construction of a building if approved by a development permit, development variance permit or building permit issued by the Township.

And they can be removed if they are considered hazardous, as certified by an arborist, or in case of an emergency if certification is provided to the Township engineering department within 30 days after the cutting.

The bylaw will remain in effect until a new official community plan has been prepared for Brookswood/Fernridge or a permanent tree protection bylaw is passed.

The Township has opened a 24-hour tree cutting tip line at 604-532-7520, that asks callers to leave the address where clear-cutting is taking place, along with their name and phone number and time of the call.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Giants earn seventh straight win while playing at Pacific Coliseum

G-Men return home for their next game at the Langley Events Centre Friday against the Silvertips.

VIDEO: Aldergrove Children’s Christmas Party

Princesses aplenty along with Santa and Mrs. Claus, ballon animals and face painting

VIDEO: Celebrity Christmas food and toy drive in Langley

Annual event helps families and abuse victims

Langley woman finds childhood decorations in Williams Park

Leah Storsley was pleased to find her parents’ homemade decorations at Christmas in Williams Park.

VIDEO: This B.C. school leads country in vaccine donations to UNICEF

Federally funded Kids Boost Immunity uses quizzes to earn vaccinations

Boeser scores 3, Pettersson has 5 points as Canucks hammer Blues

Vancouver picks up impressive 6-1 win in St. Louis

Giants earn seventh straight win while playing at Pacific Coliseum

G-Men return home for their next game at the Langley Events Centre Friday against the Silvertips.

B.C. police stop drunk driver who offered up burger instead of ID

Roadblock checks over the weekend found at least two other impaired drivers

In Canada, the term ‘nationalism’ doesn’t seem to have a bad rap. Here’s why

Data suggest that Canadians don’t see the concept of nationalism the way people do in the United States

Small quake recorded west of Vancouver Island

No injuries or tsunami warning after 5.4 rumble felt some 400 kilometres from Victoria

B.C. suspends Chinese portion of Asian forestry trade mission due to Huawei arrest

Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was detained at the request of U.S. in Vancouver

Canadians spent $1.7 billion dollars online in December 2017

Online retail sales accounted for 3.4 per cent of total retail sales

2-year investigations nets $900,000 in refunds for payday loan customers

Consumer Protection BC says selling practices were ‘aggressive and deceptive’

Most Read