Dead & diseased tree incentive plan to be debated by full council

RAPID CITY, S.D. A proposed plan to incentivize home owners to remove dead and diseased trees from their property continues to be debated by city government.

The Public Works Committee voted to send the discussion over the program to the full council without recommendation at its next meeting.

The current plan calls for a two–tiered system that will reimburse part of the cost of tree removal to homeowners based on their income.

Ward 5 Alderman Brad Estes agrees there is a need for the program, but he would like to see some adjustments.

"I'm not sure that I am in favor of the two–tiered process right now, because the last tree program treated everyone evenly, and I would like to have the new program speak to those that will go by the abatement route", said Estes.

The full council will take the issue up once again at its next meeting on July 18.