Sea Cliff Tree
Maintaining the trees that give the Village of Sea Cliff much of its character is the responsibility of each resident. To ensure this legacy for current and future residents, the Village has implemented a Tree Preservation and Protection Ordinance, commonly called the Tree Ordinance. The Tree Ordinance requires that removal of trees on private property follow prescribed procedures, based on a tree’s diameter in inches, and that removal of certain trees requires replanting of new trees. Please refer to the paragraphs below for more information on how to determine what needs to be done for removing a tree in Sea Cliff.
The Tree Ordinance also requires the existence of a resident volunteer Tree Commission whose primary responsibilities are to: maintain the Village’s treed environment, provide information to residents about their trees, facilitate Tree Ordinance compliance, and document the removals and new plantings of trees on both public and private property. The Tree Commission members are available to provide assistance via email at: Trees@seacliff-ny.gov, or call Village Hall at (516) 671-0080, on Monday from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., or Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please leave your name, telephone number (or email address), and your question. One of the Tree Commission members will contact you.
What to do if you want to remove a tree
Removal of a tree according to the Sea Cliff Tree Ordinance requires different actions, depending on the tree trunk’s diameter in inches, and the number of trees to be removed.
Tree diameter for a single-trunked tree is measured at 4 ½ feet above the ground and a multiple-trunked tree is measured at the narrowest trunk location, which is usually at ground level. Each tree that a resident desires to remove needs to be measured.
The detailed wording of the Tree Ordinance can be found in the Tree Ordinance and the requirements are summarized in the following table:
Detailed description of tree removal guidelines
CLASS A TREE
Any tree with a diameter of 10” or less can be removed by the owner without any permit or notification of any sort required.
CLASS B TREE
If a tree is between 10” and 20” in diameter, up to three trees in a 12-month period can be removed without a permit, but the resident must notify the Village prior to removal. This can be done by either coming into Village Hall to fill out a simple form, or by using the on-line Tree Removal Notification Form.
If a tree is between 10” and 20” in diameter and more than 3 trees are desired to be removed, then a removal permit must be requested by filling out and submitting a Permit Application Form obtained from Village Hall, and paying a $25 permit processing fee. A permit will be issued only after the Tree Commission visits the site, examines the tree, and determines that the tree should be removed. Village Hall employees are available to help fill out the form.
CLASS C TREE
If a tree is greater than 20” in diameter, or if a tree of any diameter has been recorded as a Sea Cliff Heritage Tree, then a removal permit must be requested by filling out and submitting a Tree Removal Permit Application (downloaded here or obtained from Village Hall) and paying a $25 permit processing fee. A permit will be issued only after the Tree Commission visits the site, examines the tree, and determines that the tree should be removed.
For any tree which requires a permit to be obtained, a replacement tree must be planted on the resident’s property within one year from the permit issuance date. This replacement tree must be of a size and species as approved by the Tree Commission. If the resident does not wish to replant a tree, a fee of $500 per tree must be paid. These fees will be added to the Sea Cliff ReLeaf fund to plant a tree elsewhere in the Village.
List of large deciduous trees for Sea Cliff – list
Qualifications for designation as a Sea Cliff Heritage Tree