For the sixth consecutive year, the Arbor Day Foundation has named Greenport Village a Tree City USA.
The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Fountain and provides a framework for community forestry management for cities and towns across the nation. Towns can achieve Tree City USA status by meeting four core standards: sound urban forestry management; maintaining a tree board or department; having a community tree ordinance; spending at least $2 per capita on urban forestry and celebrating Arbor Day.
This is the ninth time overall the village has received this honor. After being named a Tree City a few times, the village went without a tree committee for several years before reestablishing it in 2007.
Since then the committee has been working hard to preserve and grow the village’s greenery.
“I get off work and they’re still out there volunteering,” said board member George Hubbard Jr. of the committee’s tireless efforts. “They really love what they do.”
The committee’s primary goal is safety. It removed 15 hazardous trees and an additional 16 tree stumps in 2012 alone. In two years of fierce storms, damaging winds and extreme flooding, Greenport’s treescape suffered. The committee is now working to rebuild the village’s tree canopy, planting more than 100 diverse species last year.
“In a very short time the committee was able to do an amazing amount of work,” Village Mayor David Nyce said. “They are an asset to our road crew in maintaining trees around our power lines. “
Participation as a Tree City USA community provides an opportunity to educate people on the value of natural resources, Mr. Hubbard said. For instance, the tree committee joined with Greenport High School’s class of 2012 to plant a senior tree at the high school and deliver tree saplings and information to the lower grades.
The tree committee typically meets the second Tuesday of each month.