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Langford gets ball rolling on tree management plan

Temporary tree protection bylaw was also revoted on during the Jan. 16 meeting
A tree that’s been stripped by at a site on Brock Avenue in Langford on Dec. 14. (Bailey Moreton/News Staff)

Langford city council is asking for bids to develop the city’s urban forest management plan.

Councillors voted to direct staff to start a request-for-proposal process during its Jan. 16 meeting. The plan will include a review of the city’s existing tree protection policies, what other municipalities do, gathering data on the city’s forests, and also involve holding public consultation, both online and in-person.

Coun. Colby Harder and Mary Wagner both said during the meeting that hearing from the public would be important, with Harder adding getting all sides’ input would be important.

Funding is coming from the provincial government’s Local Government Climate Action Program, which is targeted at giving money to municipalities to establish climate action policies and programs.

During the same meeting, Langford council re-voted in favour of giving first, second and third readings to its tree protection bylaw upon recommendation. This comes after the city received a request from a local firm for more information and advice from its own counsel, which led city staff to recommend that council reapprove the bylaw to avoid a legal challenge on procedural grounds.

“This was done out of an abundance of caution and more importantly in the spirit of full transparency,” Braden Hutchins, director of corporate services for the city, said during the Jan. 16 meeting.

Voting on the adoption of the bylaw will be done at a future meeting, at which point the previously approved tree management bylaw will be rescinded.

The bylaw is a temporary measure meant to give the council more time to the urban forest management tree plan.

READ MORE: Langford might be in legal gray area after tree protection bylaw approved quickly

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