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Council to vote on changes to tree rules

The Bainbridge City Council will consider three proposed changes designed to enhance the city’s tree ordinance.

The first proposed change to the ordinance, which only applies to businesses, would require them to maintain the health of trees for two years after planting them as part of a landscaping plan submitted to the Bainbridge Tree Committee.

Currently, there’s no stipulations in the ordinance requiring care of the trees or replacement of them if they die.

The second proposed change seeks to promote more variety among the species of trees included in a business’ landscaping plan, which are usually submitted when a business is seeking to get permission to remove trees for construction reasons and replace them at a later date.

The proposed amendment would set criteria for how many species of trees must be included in a landscaping plan, based on the total number of trees to be planted.

The third proposed amendment would loosen the requirement of who can serve as the Tree Committee’s chairman.

Currently, the City Council appoints one of its own members to serve as chairman. The amended ordinance, if approved, would merely stipulate that the committee’s chairman be someone appointed by the City Council, but not necessarily someone on the council.

The other members of the Tree Committee are citizen volunteers appointed by the Council.

The amendments will be considered at the council’s next regular meeting on Feb. 16.

Other business

In other business, the council:

 Approved, by unanimous vote, an alcoholic beverage license application from Sehresh Saleem, doing business as Mike’s Oyster Bar, 710 Dothan Road, for sales of beer and wine for on-premises consumption.

 Heard a presentation on a new community policing team being set up by Bainbridge Public Safety, called the VIPER team. The team was detailed in the City Council article in the Wed., Feb. 3, issue of The Post-Searchlight.