Tree Tax Idea Falling Flat

By Jessica Greene
|  Friday, Jan 29, 2010  |  Updated 7:53 AM PDT
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Tree Tax Idea Falling Flat

NBC Bay Area

The idea to charge homeowners a tax to maintain trees comes after a 2-year-old boy was killed by a fallen tree during recent storms. After looking further at the incident, experts determined that the maple's roots were rotted.

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A tree tax is the latest idea to help people in San Jose maintain trees.

The idea comes after a 2-year-old boy was killed by a fallen tree during recent storms. After looking further at the incident, experts determined that the maple's roots were rotted.

People across San Jose were outraged when the city said homeowners are responsible for taking care of their trees. Up until 2008, the city helped residents with the maintenance but budget problems cut the funding.

Another plan that drawing huge criticism is one that would charge residents for planting trees. The city wants to plant 100,00 trees throughout the city over the next 12 years but the care would fall on residents' shoulders, the Mercury News tells us.

The annual fee to maintain trees would be capped, according to a city official.

"What we would be looking into is as full-service a street tree program as possible for a fee of under $100," Jim Ortbal, assistant transportation director for San Jose told the paper. "We don't want to go over that threshold."

The idea that could take a couple of years to go into effect.

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