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Tree Trimming, Cutting, & Clearing Right of Way

Objective
Employees and contractors working for Taylor Electric Cooperative shall strive at all times to cut at ground level, any trees and brush which may affect the Cooperative’s powerlines. Trees and brush growing into electric lines cause outages, power losses, safety hazards, and increase costs for the members. Safe, reliable electric service is the primary objective of the Cooperative. Therefore, the following policy and procedures have been adopted to minimize these problems at the least cost to the members.

Policy
Generally, the Cooperative will maintain a minimum right-of-way of 15 feet from each side of the wires on its overhead distribution lines, clear of trees and brush. Limbs or branches of trees located outside of this 15 foot right-of-way but that extend into the zone, shall be cut back to the trunk of the tree or a minimum of 20 feet from the powerline. In addition, any trees outside of this right-of-way which are in danger of falling into the lines shall also be cleared. However, trees within a maintained lawn area near dwellings, businesses, or approved lakeshore may be trimmed to obtain a minimum of 6 feet of clearance from any energized line.

Procedures
Employees and contractors shall strive for the following right-of-way clearances and follow these procedures as practical:

-Prior to any regular right-of-way clearing, the Cooperative will attempt to contact all land owners to advise them that line maintenance shall begin.
-For right-of-ways along roadside, all trees under and 15 feet either side of the electric line are to be removed.
-Trees within maintained lawn areas shall be trimmed a minimum of 6 feet on either side of the line for secondary or service wires. All limbs and branches within 6 feet of a secondary conductor shall be removed by natural pruning methods. Trees in which the main stem contacts secondary conductors shall be removed.
-As an incentive to the homeowner, the Cooperative may authorize the grinding of the stump of any tree that has been removed within a maintained lawn area. It will be the responsibility of the land owner to clean up any trash and reseed an area after stump grinding has occurred.
-In yards and areas where the lawn is maintained, any brush that is cut shall be chipped and hauled away. In all other areas, the brush will be piled or chipped as appropriate.
-Trees that are cut shall be left full-length on the landowner’s property for their own use unless otherwise requested. Stumps will be treated to inhibit re-growth.
-After mowing, and in other areas where it may be deemed appropriate, approved chemical treatment will be used; chemicals shall not be used where prohibited by law or regulations. Licensed supervisory personnel shall closely monitor all such applications to assure strict conformance. Upon specific written request by a member, the Cooperative shall not authorize use of chemicals on the member’s property.
-Injuries or death occur every year due to trees close to electric lines. If, in the opinion of Cooperative personnel, trimming will not eliminate a safety hazard, the tree shall be removed.
-Recently planted trees or shrubs: Any small, recently planted trees or shrubs in an area may be dug up and relocated at the option of and by the landowner. Upon request from the landowner, a grace period of six months will be granted for relocating small, recently planted trees from beneath power lines. If, after the grace period has lapsed, the trees have not been relocated, the Cooperative shall remove them.

Formerly Memo #: 34