Tree City USA
A Message Regarding Arbor Day Celebrations
March 19, 2020
This message, reviewed by leadership of the NASF Urban & Community Forestry committee, will be sent tomorrow to all recent participants in the Tree City USA, Tree Campus USA, Tree Line USA, Tree Cities of the World, and Tree Campus Healthcare programs.
We are all coming to terms with the worldwide spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), and each of us is affected by this pandemic in some way. At the Arbor Day Foundation, we are currently following the guidance of the CDC and WHO and are adjusting both our work environment and our plans for hosting events to match their recommendations for social distancing. You should consult your local or state authorities for restrictions that go beyond the general recommendations. Above all, stay safe and stay healthy.
The celebration of Arbor Day is central to our mission as well as our recognition programs. These events bring communities together to plant and tend the trees that make our cities and towns fulfilling places to live. But this year, prudence must override our desire to celebrate—at least in the same place at the same time. Therefore, for calendar year 2020, we are waiving the requirement in each of our recognition programs to hold an Arbor Day Observance. We want to eliminate the worry about continuing your years of participation in our programs, while offering options for how to proceed with a celebration of trees, should you so choose. These will be posted to our webpage in the days to come. We remain open to your ideas, yet flexible on meeting our program standards.
These are uncertain times, for sure. Follow the guidance for health and safety that is issued by local and state officials. Do the best you can to keep your city, campus, and utility tree care programs operating. Keep your staff and citizens healthy and safe. But don’t worry about postponing or canceling your state, city or campus Arbor Day event and the impact on your eventual application for recognition.
Your tree friends at the Arbor Day Foundation
Important information about Tree City USA, Tree Campus USA and Tree Line USA!
March 13, 2020
Greetings to our state urban and community forestry partners!
Thank you for the emails and calls recently keeping us updated on what is going on in your state regarding COVID-19. We realize there are questions regarding the 2019 applications and even concerns about meeting requirements for the 2020 application year. Our first concern is the health and safety of our team, partners, and all of those engaged with these community forestry programs.
- The team continues to busily approve applications and ensure that recognition materials are being distributed in a timely manner. As we monitor the COVID-19 situation, there may be scenarios where the team is working remotely. These plans are being put into place but rest assured, the majority of our work, and communication with all of you, can continue remotely. Right now everything is proceeding as planned with the fulfillment of the recognition materials to the states. However, this is an area that could be impacted with a closure of our office or delays in shipping. We are working hard to avoid these delays and will keep you informed if we foresee a slowdown in the process.
- We have heard that some states may also be forced to work remotely. Please keep us updated if your offices will not be open to accept these shipments and we will work with you to hold shipments until it is suitable for your office.
- Several communities have begun to express concerns that as 2020 Arbor Day celebrations are postponed or cancelled, that they will not be able to meet Standard 4: Arbor Day proclamation/celebration. This standard does not need to be met only on an official Arbor Day date. Communities do have the entire year to meet this standard which could even be a tree planting event during the Fall. We will be flexible with the communities as we realize we are all dealing with this unique circumstance and it truly is impacting everyone.
Our team will continue to monitor the situation here and keep you updated of any changes. We appreciate all of your hard work and value our partnership with each state agency. Please keep communicating with any of the team members listed below with updates on the situation in your state.
Michelle Saulnier (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Pete Smith (email@example.com)
Vicki Erwin (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tree City USA in Wyoming
Tree City USA is a national program that recognizes communities that have made a commitment to actively plant and care for their public trees. The program is sponsored by the National Arbor Day Foundation, State Foresters, USDA Forest Service, US Conference of Mayors, and the National League of Cities. Tree City USA was initiated in 1976 as a project of our nation's bicentennial celebration
Currently, Wyoming ranks second in the nation for the percentage of incorporated municipalities that are Tree City USA's. The award is presented annually to communities that meet four criteria. The minimum criteria are:
- Your community must have a Tree Board or Department charged by ordinance to oversee the community's tree program.
- Community leaders must enact a comprehensive tree ordinance that defines tree planting, maintenance and other requirements concerning trees growing along streets and public areas.
- Your community must spend at least $2 per capita on tree resources: this can include planting, city maintenance, grants and donations.
- Your community must have an official Arbor Day celebration with a proclamation by the mayor and a tree planting ceremony.
The Arbor Day Foundation has migrated to a new Tree City USA Application Portal. With that transition comes some growing pains. Here are some Helpful Tips and Tricks to help you navigate the new portal system and expedite the process for completing your application to meet the standards of the Arbor Day Foundation.
· Follow this link to the new Tree City USA certification portal. Other links will not work. https://applications.arborday.org/community/city/
· All Tree City USA communities must reset their passwords to access their application. Click on "Find Your Community" and follow the instructions to login. If you have trouble logging in after following the instructions, please email email@example.com.
· The City Forestry Contact is a person in your community that answers questions about the Tree City USA program.
· If you have more than five tree board members, please select five and enter the names and emails. Additional members' information can be uploaded as an attachment. (We do not need individual email addresses and phone numbers for each tree board member, but you must enter something to advance to the next section.)
· This year, you must upload or link your tree ordinance. Previous entries have not been saved in the new portal.
· Do not use commas, periods, or $-signs in the budget section.
· Please make sure your Arbor Day Proclamation has the correct date and is signed by the mayor. It must be dated and signed within the 2019 calendar year.
· Before you download the Mayor Signature Form, all sections of the application must be complete.
· If you submit your application and you are not prompted with a message that it has been submitted for review, please scroll to the top of your application to see what needs to be updated.
· The WSFD State Forester/Coordinator will sign each application once it is submitted in the portal.
· To apply for the Growth Award online, the community must first submit their Tree City USA application. Once they do, if they qualify to apply for the Growth Award they will be invited to start their application. At any time after they apply to as a Tree City USA they can log back into the portal and click on the link to start their Growth Award application.
· Use this Helpful video for more information about the Tree City USA portal.