Before Felling a Tree, Check Out Our Tree-Cutting Policies

By Treena Parish, Department Manager AECD

If there’s a dead tree on your property or one that’s looming dangerously, it might be time to cut it down. Before you grab that saw, please review these answers to the most frequently asked questions about tree cutting.

What is the process for getting permission to remove a tree?

Call the AECD and a representative will come by and review the request. If the tree is allowed to be removed, the tree will be marked with a ribbon and an approval form will be filled out. The form will either be given on the spot to the owner or mailed to the billing address. A copy of this approval form will be retained on file at the AECD office.

Who can take down dead trees?

Anyone can take down trees approved for removal by the POA. The POA will provide documentation of approval. Please do not take trees down without consulting the AECD at 706-268-3394.

Can I take down trees against the house?

Trees within 10 feet of the house or garage or 3 feet of the driveway can be removed without POA permission.

Can I take down dead trees on the green space?

No. Trees that are not on your property can not be touched. This fine is $3,000 per tree or shrub. Property owners on the lake need to be especially aware of the property line because there is a green space that encircles the lake. This area is protected to maintain the area’s natural beauty.

What is vista pruning?

Any time a tree/shrub is removed or trimmed to enhance views.

Who can do vista pruning?

Any tree service you choose. (For your convenience we have a list of tree services that have done work in Big Canoe.) However, a representative from the POA must be present to supervise. Please schedule the work with the tree service and then call AECD to schedule the supervisor’s time. There is an additional charge of $50 per hour for this service.

Do fines really get issued for the unauthorized cutting of trees?

And in many cases, a restoration plan must be submitted, approved, and implemented in addition to a fine being paid.

For more information, contact Treena at

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