Magazine article American Forests

Federal Judge Pays for Cutting City Trees. (Clippings)

Magazine article American Forests

Federal Judge Pays for Cutting City Trees. (Clippings)

Article excerpt

Sometimes a room with a view comes with a high price--about a half-million dollars worth. This spring, a federal judge in Seattle, Washington, will pay $500,000 to restore Colman Park, where his gardener chopped down more than 120 trees last year to improve the judge's view of Lake Washington.

Judge Jerome Farris settled the case out of court, the Seattle Times said. No criminal charges were filed, but the city required that he help in park restoration, relinquish any added gain to the value of his house, and pay a fine for violating the city's critical-areas ordinance.

"The number one issue at hand is to reestablish the canopy as quickly as possible," says Mark Mead, senior urban forester for Seattle's parks and recreation department. "It's very important to restore the habitat, and increase the overall benefits of the urban forest on site." Last August, Seattle park workers discovered more than 120 mature big leaf maples and indigenous cherry trees had been cut down within a three-quarter acre plot next to Farris' home. …

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