Sixty-four Hoosier cities and towns have been given Tree City USA recognition by the DNR Division of Forestry for outstanding management of their urban forests.
Nine of the 64 also received the Growth Award, which shows a higher standard of excellence for urban forestry management.
“These municipalities are to be commended for using the urban forest as a tool to enhance economic development, environmental health, and quality of life in their community,” State Forester John Seifert said.
The Tree City USA program has been in existence in Indiana since 1984, when Bloomington met the criteria and became the first Tree City in the state. This year Russiaville was awarded Tree City USA for the first time.
To achieve Tree City USA, communities must draft and pass a public tree care ordinance, designate a municipal department and tree advisory committee, spend at least $2 per capita for the tree care program, and have an Arbor Day observance and proclamation.
DNR Forestry staff will formally recognize the communities during April and May at Arbor Day ceremonies throughout the state. The Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters sponsor the program.
For more information on urban forestry and how to become a Tree City USA, contact Tiffany Arp, Community and Urban Forestry Coordinator at (317) 234-4386 orTArp@dnr.IN.gov .
The 64 honorees are (asterisks denotes Growth Award): Anderson, Angola, Auburn, Avon, Batesville, Beech Grove, Berne, Bloomington, Carmel*, Chesterton, Columbia City, Crown Point, Culver, Dana, Decatur, Dyer, East Chicago, Elkhart*, Evansville, Fishers, Fort Wayne, Fortville, Fremont, Goshen*, Greencastle*, Greendale, Greenfield, Grissom Air Reserve Base, Hartford City, Huntington, Indianapolis, Kendallville, Lafayette, Madison, Merrillville, Michigan City, Middlebury*, Mishawaka, Mount Ayr, Muncie, Munster, Nappanee, Nashville, New Harmony, New Haven, Noblesville*, North Manchester, NSA Crane, Rensselaer*, Richmond, Rochester, Russiaville, Salem, South Bend, Syracuse*, Terre Haute*, Tipton, Valparaiso, Wakarusa, West Lafayette, Westfield, Whiting, Winamac, Zionsville.