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Proviso Probe

Sunday, August 26, 2007

preventing storm damage through enforcing code

This is a picture of a dead tree that was knocked over in Maywood (Saturday, August 25). If I remember right it's a property on 8th Ave.

The tree was dead--not just a little dead, but long dead. I presume it was knocked down in the storm. It took down a number of wires going to the house on the corner lot. (The leaves in the picture are from a second tree that was damaged by the falling dead tree.) However, the tree was technically on the adjacent property.

The Village of Maywood should have made the owner of the property remove the dead tree because it was a public nuisance.

Obviously, most of the problems caused by the storm couldn't have been prevented by better enforcement of local code issues. But some problems can be prevented by engaging in common sense preventive measures, like removing large, dead trees.

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  • The removal of a dead tree is a common sense issue, but it may not be one for code enforcement. It may be advisable to check the Village Code, which may state that tree removal on private property is only required if it overhangs public property or the public right-of-way (sidewalks, streets, alleys, adjacent parks), or if the tree is diseased (dutch elm). Otherwise it may only be an issue for the homeowner and their insurance policy.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:08 AM, August 27, 2007  

  • I haven't read the code, but removing dead trees over a certain size should be required whether there's an obvious threat to public property or not.

    One doesn't know what direction a large tree will fall, especially in a storm.

    And there's a threat to power lines. Power lines aren't public property, but the public has an interest in making sure they aren't damaged.

    And even if the only threat is to a neighbors garage, this is still enough reason for a municipality to act.

    What's it say about a community that would rather leave the issue to the neighbors and private litigation rather than doing the right thing?

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 9:57 AM, August 27, 2007  

  • If the code guy tony was on his job,,hmmm..Why is he still there?
    all he does really is pick on the ligit homeowners. He needs new employment.

    By Anonymous Clean house in Code Enf., at 10:07 AM, August 27, 2007  

  • "What's it say about a community that would rather leave the issue to the neighbors and private litigation rather than doing the right thing?"

    Sadly, that's the culture.

    By Anonymous Katrina, at 11:37 AM, August 27, 2007  

  • Sure there are plenty of things that Code Enforcement should be doing. But, if the removal of dead trees on private property is not in the Village Code then there is nothing the staff, including Tony, can do about it.
    If its not in the Code can the ordinance be amended?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:30 PM, August 27, 2007  

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