Call Before You Cut!

From OMAFRA Stakeholder Communications:

Municipalities are responsible for developing their own by-laws. Your municipality may have passed by-laws that determine if you can remove a tree from your land or woodlot. These by-laws may include conditions that affect how you carry out the work, including the need for a qualified professional and/or a permit to complete the work.

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Tree protection by-laws and the requirement for permits, including the types of conditions within them, can differ between municipalities. Save yourself from costly fines or legal fees – talk to your municipality first before removing trees. In areas where there is an upper-tier municipality, you may need to talk to both the upper-tier and the lower- tier municipality.

Municipal authority for tree protection by-laws is outlined in the Municipal Act, 2001, administered by the Minister of Municipal Affairs. As a starting point, refer to sections 135-141 of the Municipal Act for more information about the powers of municipalities respecting tree cutting by-laws.

The Municipal Act does not explicitly provide exemptions for agriculture. Municipalities, however, commonly include exemptions in their by-laws for horticultural operations, such as:

  • Commercial fruit and nut orchards
  • Christmas tree production
  • Commercial tree nurseries
  • Commercial sugar bush and maple syrup operations

Visit the Ontario Woodlot Association’s website for additional information.

About Sean Westerveld

Ginseng and Medicinal Herbs Specialist, OMAFRA
This entry was posted in All Specialty Crops and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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