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Agendas and Minutes

Tree Commission (View All)

Tree Commission minutes

Thursday, September 06, 2007




September 6, 2007


CALL TO ORDER –Chair Laurie Sager called the Ashland Tree Commission meeting to order at 7:03 p.m. on September 6, 2007 in the Siskiyou Room in the Community Development and Engineering Services Building located at 51 Winburn Way, Ashland, OR.


Commissioners Present

Council Liaison

Laurie Sager

Russ Silbiger

Kelly Cruser


John Rinaldi Jr.

Staff Present

Zane Jones

Angela Barry, Assistant Planner


Anne Rich, Parks Department





Rinaldi/Cruser m/s to approve the minutes of May 3, 2007. Voice vote: all AYES, Motion passed.  The minutes of May 3, 2007 were approved as presented. 



None present



PLANNING ACTION:  2007-00986


OWNER/APPLICANT:  Souren Minasian & Vadim Agakhanov

DESCRIPTION:   Request for a minor land partition to create two lots, with one lot being a flag lot and for Site Review approval for three residential units in addition to the existing house for the property located at 625 Holly St. The application also includes a request for an Exception to Street Standards to allow curbside sidewalks without parkrows. COMPREHENSIVE PLAN DESIGNATION:  Multi-Family Residential ZONING: R-2; ASSESSOR’S MAP #: 39 1E 09DB; TAX LOT: 9100


Amy explained the Planning Action and that it had originally been approved as a Type I but was subsequently called up to a public hearing by a neighbor. The neighbor had expressed concerns over exposed roots that were uncovered during a recent construction project on the site. Amy read the staff report conditions of approval and the arborist report to the commission.  


Applicant Testimony – Vadim Agakhanov, the applicant spoke about the proposed preservation of the Walnut tree and that the tree is capricious. Though the foundation will be post and beam and hopefully this will help preserve the tree, according to the arborist the chance of survival is 50/50. He also spoke about the exposed tree roots on the subject property and believes they are from a Maple tree that was previously removed. He stated that the roots had to be exposed because he had to sink the house low into the ground to meet the other demands of the neighbors.                         


Public Testimony – Steve Sirianni, 558 Holly Street, spoke about the Dogwood trees on his property and showed pictures of exposed tree roots on the applicant’s property. He is concerned that when the winter rain begins the excavated area will erode and further expose the roots of the dogwood trees. He is hoping that the Tree Commission can impose conditions that will help his trees survive.


Commission Discussion – Commissioner Rinaldi was grateful that the Dogwood trees have survived the major excavation in such close proximity to the root zone. Commissioner Jones suggested the project Arborist review the health of the dogwood trees and that a maintenance plan be developed. Commissioner Jones suggested that the applicant bring back a new tree protection plan showing all trees within 15 feet of the site. Commissioner Sager addressed the proposed mitigation tree and didn’t feel that the proposed size seemed appropriate and drafted a condition that gave a specific size for mitigation. The Commissioner’s drafted the following conditions.



1)     That the project Arborist shall evaluate the health of the Dogwood tree on the adjacent property and the roots exposed during excavation on the subject site prior to the construction of the retaining wall.

2)     That the retaining wall shall be installed prior to the falls rains.

3)       That all trees within 15’ of the site in accordance with 18.61.200. 2.a. shall be shown on a revised Tree Protection and Preservation plan.

4)       That is the English walnut tree proposed for preservation is removed due to the impacts from construction the removal will not require a modification of this planning action.

5)       That a deciduous tree of similar species, stature and mature canopy, no less than 2” caliper inches shall be used as the mitigation tree for the walnut removal in a suitable location on site.



Type I Review Sign Up

October – Zane, John, Kelly

November – Laurie, John

December – Zane, Laurie


National Arbor Day Foundation – The Tree Commission approved the appropriation of $10.00 for the National Arbor Day Foundation membership.



Airport Commission Request- The Commissioners felt it would be irresponsible for them to draft landscaping plans for the Airport. They feel that a professional who specializes in airport landscaping design should draft the plans and the Tree Commission could review the plans for appropriate, drought tolerant species. Rinaldi suggested maybe a subcommittee could review the plans.  


Heritage Tree Program – Amy explained the Heritage Tree program ordinance as written and the issues have been identified regarding the deed restriction. The Commissioners feel the deed restriction maybe to too strong of language and that is deterring people from nominating trees to the Heritage Tree program. Sager suggested that the Tree Commission look at amending the ordinance to eliminate the deed restriction language. Jones thought maybe the champion of the program; Don Todt should come and talk about the history of the existing program. Rinaldi said maybe there should be a booklet or pamphlet or that an ‘outstanding trees of Ashland’ program be started. The Commission thought that a pamphlet should be created that has the ‘outstanding trees of Ashland’ featured. Commissioner Cruser stated that without restrictions it would be celebratory.


Back Page Articles –Topics discussed were Tree of the Year, Proper Planting and Care of Trees, General health of trees and bark beetle kill. 


Revision of Street Tree Guide –Sager thought someone should outline the tasks. Rinaldi said we should go though the list, add trees and remove some trees from the list and speak with ‘experts’. Anne Rich stated that the Raywood Ash should be taken off of the list because they get top heavy and have shallow roots, also the Birch should be taken off of the list since they require a lot of water.  The Commission would Amy to talk with Robbin about how the original was created. The Commission would feel best knowing how the original was created and then undertake revisions. The Commission would also like input from Dave Wood (Electric Dept. Tree Trimmer) and solicit input from the public via the City website. Councilor Silbiger suggested also contacting the Public Works Department to find out what type of street trees are damaging to the public infrastructure.  


Tree of the Year Kick-Off – Amy alerted the Commission that only 2 ballots had been submitted and that we need to solicit more nominations. Sager stated that last month someone suggested going to the schools. The Commissioners discussed writing a Backpage article for the Tidings and possibly inserting the Tree of the Year ballot. Jones, Cruser and Sager will be placing nomination forms at various locations in the City.



Liaison Reports – None


New Business –Sager informed the Tree Commission that an Urban Forester is being hired in Grants Pass. The City Administrator is very excited and wants to increase the canopy coverage. Jones said other towns are probably good resources for the Recommended Street Tree Guide.


Current Balance – $740


ADJOURNMENT - Commissioner Sager adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m.



Respectfully submitted by Amy Anderson, Assistant Planner

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