Ohio Remains the National Leader in Tree City USA Communities

May. 4, 2015

COLUMBUS, OH – Ohio remains the nation’s leader in Tree City USA communities with 242 participating cities, villages and townships. This marks Ohio’s 34th year as the top Tree City USA state, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

“Communities across Ohio continue to recognize the value of their urban tree resources as a source of cleaner air and water,” said Robert Boyles, ODNR deputy director and state forester. “Participation in the Tree City USA program shows the extra effort cities are making to preserve healthy tree populations so their residents can enjoy a healthier lifestyle.”

As part of this nationwide program, Ohioans last year planted more than 29,000 trees, pruned more than 83,000 trees, volunteered more than 8,000 hours in their urban forestry programs, and invested more than $43 million toward urban forestry efforts.

Since 1979, the ODNR Division of Forestry has assisted communities in enhancing the quality of life within cities and villages through comprehensive tree planting and care programs. In 1997, Ohio became the first state to have more than 200 Tree City USA communities.

Participating communities must establish a tree board or department to carry out a tree care program, enact a community tree ordinance to provide direction, fund the community forestry program with an annual budget of at least $2 per capita, and celebrate Arbor Day with a community ceremony and mayoral proclamation.

The Tree City USA program, created in 1976, is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Conference of Mayors, National League of Cities and the National Association of State Foresters.

The ODNR Division of Forestry works to promote the wise use and sustainable management of Ohio’s public and private woodlands. To learn more about Ohio’s woodlands, forest health and tree care, visit forestry.ohiodnr.gov.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

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For more information, contact:
Stephanie Leis, ODNR Office of Communications
Tyler Stevenson, ODNR Division of Forestry