Urban Forestry Fund announced for city of Rhinelander
For the Star Journal
RHINELANDER – An effort is underway to establish a Rhinelander Urban Forestry Fund that would be used to plant trees in the city. The goal, according to a press release, is to ensure a strong heritage of urban trees for current and future generations. The announcement was made in honor of Arbor Day.
“Today we start the process of making tree planting a priority in the city of Rhinelander,” Rhinelander Mayor Kris Hanus stated. “With the hard work of the tree committee and our city forester we are now at the point of collecting donations for this cause.”
Hanus add that he would like to see the city plan at least 85 trees per year. Hanus kicked off the campaign with a $500 donation. City Administrator Zach Vruwink said he will match dollar-for-dollar each city employee and city official donation up to $500.
The Rhinelander Urban Forestry Fund, when created, will be a non-endowed fund nested within the Rhinelander Community Foundation to support the restoration, planting and management of urban trees on public spaces within the city of Rhinelander. This includes trees on boulevards, parks, schools and green spaces.
City forester Tom Jerow said he is excited about managing trees for the long term, but noted it is important to plant the right tree in the right place.
“It’s critical that we avoid planting trees under or over important utility infrastructure like power lines,” Jerow said. “It is also important to plant a diversity of trees so that we avoid catastrophic diseases and pests like emerald ash borer or Dutch elm disease.”
Donations to the fund can be made at city hall. Checks can be written to City of Rhinelander with “Tree Fund” noted on the memo line. Once $10,000 is reached the city will begin the process of opening the fund with the Community Foundation.