Mount Vernon Receives Tree City USA Growth Award

MOUNT VERNON, April 27, 2023 – The City of Mount Vernon has once again received a Tree City
USA Growth Award from the Arbor Day Foundation in honor of the City’s commitment to effective
urban forest management.


A Growth Award is bestowed upon a community alongside its Tree City USA recognition for
demonstrating environmental improvement and a higher level of tree care. The Growth Award
recognizes major milestones and annual activities in five categories on a point-based system to
build sustainable community forestry programs over the long term such as building a team,
measuring trees and forests, planning the work, performing the work and building the community
framework.


James Brown, chair of Mount Vernon’s Shade Tree and Beautification Commission, noted that this
year’s Growth Award for the City was just one of 11 in the central Ohio region, which encompasses
15 counties and 45 Tree City USA communities.


For almost 30 years now, the City of Mount Vernon has also been lauded for preserving its tree
canopy for future generations. In recognition of these continuing efforts, the City has received a
Tree City USA designation every year since 1993. Mount Vernon continues to achieve Tree City
USA recognition by meeting the program’s four requirements of maintaining a tree board or
department, having a tree care ordinance, dedicating an annual community forestry budget of at
least $2 per capita, and hosting an Arbor Day observance and proclamation.


“Tree City USA communities see the positive effects of an urban forest firsthand,” said Dan Lambe,
chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. “The trees being planted and cared for by Mount
Vernon are ensuring that generations to come will enjoy a better quality of life. Additionally,
participation in this program brings residents together and creates a sense of civic pride, whether
it’s volunteer engagement or public education.”


With the additional recognition of a Growth Award, the City’s eighth consecutive such honor, Mount
Vernon has demonstrated its expediency towards building a framework for sustainable urban
forest management. Urban tree plantings help reduce energy consumption by up to 25 percent,
which will reduce general energy costs and help with the overall cooling of the City as well. In
addition, members of the community benefit from properly placed trees as they increase property
values from 7 percent to 20 percent. Trees also positively affect the local ecosystem by helping to
clean water and create animal habitats to encourage biodiversity.


The Tree City USA program was created in 1976, and is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation,
U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Conference of Mayors, National League of Cities and the National
Association of State Foresters. For more information on the program, visit
arborday.org/TreeCityUSA.

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