Tree City/Line/Campus USA Programs
Tree City USA Application Forms
Standard #3 Budget Worksheet
Example Arbor Day Proclamation
Tree Line USA Application Forms
Tree Line USA Application
Tree Campus USA Application Forms
Tree Campus USA Application
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Urban and Community Forestry program cosponsors the Tree City, Tree Line and Tree Campus USA programs with the Arbor Day Foundation. These are nationwide programs that recognize communities, utilities and campuses for their commitment to quality tree care and provide the basis for sustainable urban forestry management.
In 1972, the Tree City USA program began when Nebraska's Division of Tourism celebrated its centennial Arbor Day. As a result of this great success, the program went national in 1976 recognizing 42 communities, both small and large, for their efforts in proper tree care management.
There are now more than 3,300 Tree Cities, 150 Tree Lines and 40 Tree Campuses across the country. For 2011, Michigan honored 121 communities, 3 utilities and 2 universities with these designations. Michigan continues to be ranked 8th nationally in total number of communities certified. View this year's list or map of current awardees.
To receive the TC USA award, a community must meet four standards. It must have:
- A tree board, commission, or municipal department that has legal responsibility for the care of public trees and has the authority to develop and administer a community tree management program.
- A tree ordinance which identifies authority for public tree management and establishes policies for tree planting, maintenance, and removal.
- An annual budget for administering, managing, and implementing the community forestry program of at least $2.00 per capita. Funds spent for tree care in various departments as well as volunteer labor and donated supplies and services can be included in the calculation.
- An Arbor Day observance and proclamation. This can be as simple as a brief tree planting ceremony or as intricate as a week-long celebration with contests, songs, readings, media involvement, and education programs. The observance can occur at any time of the year. A proclamation by the mayor or city council must accompany the observance.
Communities achieving Tree City status receive a flag, a walnut mounted plaque and special highway entrance signs proclaiming this community a Tree City USA! But the TC USA designation is more than a flag, signs, and a plaque. It is a feather in your cap that can help sustain or improve a forestry program in these tight economic times.
How to Apply
If you are interested in the TC USA program contact the state Urban Forestry Coordinator. They can provide you with more information and an application. Completed applications are due to your state coordinator no later than December 31 of each year.
To apply for these designations, you may
- apply online at: https://portal.arborday.org/login.aspx or
- submit the appropriate application forms (found above) to the state coordinator at:
State Urban Forestry Coordinator
PO Box 30452
Lansing, MI 48909
Your community or utility may already have met the these standards. If not, the state coordinator can assist you by providing advice and resources to help you achieve this designation and join the ranks of Michigan's other Tree Cities and Tree Lines.