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The Mid-county Memo strives to be accurate and thorough in its coverage and corrects significant errors of fact. If you find an error, please call 503-287-8904 or e-mail department editor Darlene Vinson at

Our account of an item in last month's Perlman's Potpourri, “Tree laws head for Council,” a report of the Citywide Tree Project - as recommended by the Portland Planning Commission and awaiting City Council action - contained a number of errors.

A special process will govern the cutting of trees on developed, single family lots. Although owners will be encouraged to alert the city before cutting any tree, they will be allowed to cut down trees less than 20 inches in diameter by right. For trees larger than this - including dead, diseased or dangerous trees - they must replace the tree by planting another of any size or kind on the property unless it can be shown this isn't practical. The Commission recommended that no fee be charged in such cases, but project manager Roberta Jortner says this is still being debated.

On other residential properties, owners may cut trees 12 inches or less in diameter at will, and they may cut dead, diseased or dangerous trees, or trees within 10 feet of an existing building, with a tree for tree replacement. For large trees that do not fit these specifications, the replacement requirements are more severe, and may require that the replacement tree, or trees, have a total diameter equal to the one cut.

Tree Preservation Plans will not henceforth be required as part of conditional use and design review processes, as we reported and as is the case with land division proceedings, but tree preservation will become a more important factor in these proceedings.

Although reported accurately, the timeline has changed. A new draft for public comment will likely be published in November, with City Council action probably occurring in December.

Finally, we ascribed a wrong first name to City Forester Dave McAllister. We regret the errors.
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