City receives Tree City USA awards
From Contributed Reports
Thursday, July 12, 2018
Nash County Ranger Bill Lewis of the N.C. Forest Service presented the city of Rocky Mount with the Tree City USA, Tree Line USA and Tree City USA Growth awards during a recent City Council meeting.
Rocky Mount is one of more than 3,400 communities that have made the commitment to becoming a Tree City USA. The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation in partnership with the U.S. Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters. This is the 15th year the city of Rocky Mount has received the Tree City USA award by meeting the program's four requirements: a tree board; a tree-care ordinance; an annual community forestry budget of at least $2 per capita and an Arbor Day observance and proclamation.
"Tree City USA communities see the impact an urban forest has in a community first hand," said Dan Lambe, president of the Arbor Day Foundation. "Additionally, recognition brings residents together and creates a sense of community pride, whether it's through volunteer engagement or public education."
Lewis also presented the city with the Tree Line USA award, which is a national program that recognizes both public and private utilities for their ability to deliver safe and reliable electricity while maintaining healthy community trees. This is the 11th year the city of Rocky Mount has received this award.
According to the Arbor Day Foundation, the city's commitment to proper tree-care practices benefits customers by providing cleaner air and water, increasing property values and improving quality-of-life. Trees also conserve energy and reduce peak electric demand.
The city of Rocky Mount achieved Tree Line USA by meeting the five program standards. Utilities must follow industry standards for quality tree care; provide annual worker training in best tree-care practices; sponsor a tree-planting and public education program; maintain a tree-based energy conservation program; and participate in an Arbor Day Celebration.
The city was also presented with the Tree City USA Growth Award for demonstrating environmental improvement and a higher level of tree care. The Growth Award recognizes new or improved programs and projects across four categories: education and public relations; partnerships; planning and management; and tree planting and maintenance. This is the fifth time the city has received this award.