|Action||Amend Vegetation Control Regulations on State Rights of Way|
|Comment Period||Ends 2/2/2022|
First, please stop the Fast-track request for amending the regulation on vegetation control in VDOT right of ways. This entire regulation needs a new look at both aspects it regulates that are completely different: business frontage and street tree rights of way, and the viewshed from highway rights of ways to billboards. This needs a complete airing to focus on what we now know about the climate impacts of forest loss (loss of carbon sequestration, increasing stormwater runoff), the environmental impacts of declining canopy (increased air pollution, dirtier water, less vibrant ecosystems, and declining natural beauty which invites businesses to thrive in Virginia), as well as a cost-benefit analysis--there is a great deal of new data about the positive economic impacts of trees and shade on businesses, including improved sales, lower energy costs, less crime and rising property values.
Secondly, please look at this regulation again. There is much to learn about tree removal that impacts ALL Virginia citizens, not just the hard working VDOT workers who now are still required to carefully measure what they seek to remove under this regulation.