Chapter 11.16

11.16.010    Purpose.

11.16.020    Definitions.

11.16.030    Responsibilities, duties and authority.

11.16.040    Master tree list.

11.16.050    Jurisdiction.

11.16.060    Prohibited trees.

11.16.070    Planting and maintaining.

11.16.075    Landscape plans.

11.16.080    Utilities.

11.16.090    Tree care.

11.16.100    Tree removal.

11.16.110    Persons allowed to care for trees.

11.16.120    Improper treatment.

11.16.130    Public nuisances.

11.16.140    Appeal.

11.16.010 Purpose.

(a)    It is recognized that the planting, proper care and preservation of trees is important in order to protect property values, encourage and assure the continuance of quality development, protect and conserve the attractiveness, aesthetics and scenic beauty of the city, protect the environment of the city, provide shade, and to act as a noise buffer.

(b)    It is for the best interests of the city and of the citizens and public thereof that a comprehensive plan for the planting and maintenance of trees in or which may overhang public streets within the city should be developed and established. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.020 Definitions.

(a)    As used in this chapter:

"City" means the city of Marysville, situated in the county of Yuba, California.

"Master tree list" means an official adopted list for planting certain varieties of trees in public rights-of-way or planting easements within the city.

"Owner" means the legal owner of the real property on which the tree is situated as shown on the most recent county assessor’s tax roll, and any lessee of the owner.

"Person" means and includes an individual, a firm, an association, a corporation, a copartnership, and the lessees, trustees, receivers, agents, servants and employees of any such person.

"Pruning standards" means the most recent pruning standards established by the International Society of Arboriculture, and as amended by this chapter.

"Public streets" or "streets" means and includes all roads, streets, avenues, boulevards, alleys, parkways, public rights-of-way, or any portion thereof, of the city.

"Superintendent" means the superintendent of public works and grounds of the city, also the public works director.

(b)    The superintendent shall have the right to determine whether any specific woody plant shall be considered a tree or a shrub. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.030 Responsibilities, duties and authority.

The superintendent or his duly authorized representative shall be charged with the enforcement of this chapter. The responsibilities and duties of the superintendent shall include, but are not limited to:

(1)    Enforcement of this chapter; The superintendent may serve notice to any person in violation thereof or institute legal proceedings as may be required, and the city attorney is hereby authorized to institute appropriate proceedings to that end;

(2)    Preparation of an annual program for tree planting and tree care in public places of the city;

(3)    Preparation and recommendation to the city council of a comprehensive urban forest management plan;

(4)    Development of maintenance standards as they relate to street trees in public places;

(5)    Inspection of the planting, maintenance and removal of all trees in public places;

(6)    Determination of tree removals in public places;

(7)    Review of all landscaping plans as they affect trees in public places. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.040 Master tree list.

(a)    The superintendent is hereby charged with the duty of promptly determining the types and species of trees suitable and desirable for planting and the areas in which and conditions under which the trees shall be planted, or which may overhang the public streets within the city. Such determination shall be made by the superintendent, who shall consult with those familiar with the subject of such planting, such as landscape architects, arborists, nurserymen and administrators. When the determination has been made, the superintendent shall report his findings in writing to the city council. When approved by the city council the report, known as the master tree list, shall be placed on file in the office of the city clerk and public works director, and shall thereafter be the official determination of the superintendent. Revisions or changes in the master tree list may be made from time to time by the superintendent, in the manner described in this section for the development, approval and filing of the original master tree list.

(b)    All trees hereafter planted along or which may overhang the public streets of the city must be on the master tree list, unless a written permit from the superintendent has first been obtained to plant a tree not on the list. The permit may be granted by the superintendent only upon his obtaining approval thereof from the city council. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.050 Jurisdiction.

The superintendent shall have jurisdiction and control of the planting, setting out, location and placement of all trees in the public streets of the city, and shall likewise have supervision, direction and control of the care, trimming, removal, relocation and replacement thereof. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.060 Prohibited trees.

Some types of trees, upon maturing, instead of becoming assets to the community, become liabilities due to structural weaknesses, disease or insect susceptibility, fruit, thorns, short life, destructive root systems, and rank-growing branches requiring excessive maintenance. Due to one or more of these characteristics, it is unlawful to plant the following trees along or where they may overhang any public street:

Botanical Name


Common Name



All species

Ailanthus glandulosa

Tree of heaven

Albizzia julibrissin rosa

Silk tree


Palm—all species


All species

Gledetsia triacanthosinermis


Moraine locust

Juglans nigra

Black walnut

Morus alba



Pine—all species


Poplar—all species

Robinia pseudoacacia



Pink flowering locust


Yew—all species

Ulmus americana

American elm

(Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.070 Planting and maintaining.

(a)    Except as otherwise provided in this section, within the limits of funds provided in the city budget, the city shall supply, plant, maintain and replace street trees in all planting strips and planting easements within the city. Fees shall be charged to subdividers or property owners to provide the cost of furnishing, locating, planting, and fertilizing street trees.

(b)    Any person who wishes to plant or set out any tree in above-ground containers in the public right-of-way shall make written application to and obtain a permit from the superintendent. The permit shall include a landscape plan as set forth in Chapter 18.86 of this code.

(c)    No maintenance of street trees shall be provided by the city on private property except in a planting strip or planting easement. The owner or occupant of the property, as the case may be, shall be responsible for watering and fertilizing street trees located in a planting strip or planting easement abutting such property. The city shall not be responsible for watering or fertilizing any such street trees.

(d)    Property owners requesting trees to be trimmed, except for diseased, dangerous and dead trees, will be charged a fee based upon the city’s fee schedule. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.075 Landscape plans.

All trees planted within the public right-of-way, or which may overhang public streets within the city shall be planted in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 18.86 of this code. (Ord. 1148 § 3, 1992).

11.16.080 Utilities.

Any person doing business as a public utility subject to the jurisdiction of the Public Utilities Commission of the state and any constituted public agency authorized to provide and providing utility service, shall be given a permit from the superintendent, valid for one year from the date of issuance, permitting such person to trim, brace, remove or perform such other acts with respect to trees growing in and/or adjacent to the public rights-of-way as may be necessary to comply with the safety regulations of the commission and as may be necessary to maintain the safe operation of its business. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.090 Tree care.

(a)    It is unlawful and it is prohibited for any person other than the superintendent or his duly authorized agent or deputy to cut, trim, prune, spray, brace, plant, move, remove or replace any tree in any public street within the city, or to cause the same to be done, unless and until a written permit to do so has been first obtained from the superintendent. Any such permit may be declared void by the superintendent if its terms are violated.

(b)    Where sidewalk or curb damage due to tree roots occurs, every effort shall be made by the property owner to correct the problem without removing or damaging the tree. The superintendent shall be responsible for developing or approving corrective measures.

(c)    Topping of trees in the public right-of-way is prohibited. Topping is the practice of cutting back large-diameter branches of a mature tree to stubs. It is stressful to mature trees, resulting in reduced vigor, decline, disease or even death of the tree. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.100 Tree removal.

(a)    No person may remove a tree located within the public right-of-way, planting strip, or planting easement, without first obtaining a tree removal permit from the superintendent. Trees subject to this chapter which are removed without approval of the superintendent may be charged against the removing party as set forth in the tree-pricing schedule approved by the International Society of Arboriculture.

(b)    Property owners shall replace trees requiring removal. The replacement shall be of the type and size approved by the superintendent. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.110 Persons allowed to care for trees.

No person other than an owner or public utility may do any act for which a permit is required under Section 11.16.080, except a person whose principal business is tree surgery, trimming or maintenance, and who has obtained any necessary state contractor’s license and a permit to carry on such business in the city from the superintendent and finance officer. Permits issued pursuant to this section may be granted for a period of one year from the date of issuance. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.120 Improper treatment.

It shall be unlawful for any person to injure or destroy by any means any tree planted or maintained by the city in a planting strip, planting easement or on public property, including, but not limited to, the following:

(1)    Damaging, cutting or carving the bark of any tree;

(2)    Causing or permitting any wire charged with electricity to be attached to any tree;

(3)    Allowing any gaseous, liquid or solid substance harmful to trees to come in contact with the roots, leaves, bark or any other part of any tree;

(4)    Constructing a concrete sidewalk or driveway or otherwise filling up the ground around any tree so as to interfere with the circulation of air or uptake of water by its roots;

(5)    Piling building materials, equipment or other substances around any tree;

(6)    Posting any sign, poster, notice or other object on any tree, tree stake or guard;

(7)    Fastening any guy wire, cable, rope, nails, screws or other device to any tree, tree stake or guard;

(8)    Placing or arranging any lights on any tree; or

(9)    Causing or encouraging any fire or burning near or around any tree. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.130 Public nuisances.

(a)    The superintendent may inspect any tree adjacent to or overhanging any public street in the city to determine whether the same or any portion thereof is in such a condition as to constitute a hazard or impediment to the progress or vision of anyone traveling on the public street. Any tree or part thereof growing upon private property but overhanging or interfering with the use of any street that in the opinion of the superintendent endangers the life, health, safety or property of the public shall be declared a public nuisance. If the owner of such private property does not correct or remove the nuisance within ten days after receipt of written notice thereof from the superintendent, the superintendent shall cause the nuisance to be corrected or removed and the cost shall be assessed to the owner.

(b)    Nothing contained herein shall be deemed to impose any liability upon the city, its officers or employees, nor to relieve the owner of any private property from the duty to keep any tree upon his property or under his control in such a condition as to prevent it from constituting a public nuisance as defined in this section. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).

11.16.140 Appeal.

Any person aggrieved by an act or determination of the superintendent in the exercise of the authority herein granted shall have the right of appeal to the city council, whose decision, after public hearing of the matter, shall be final and conclusive. (Ord. 1150 § 3 (part), 1992).