For the 33rd consecutive year, Ohio leads the nation for Tree City USA designations with 244 communities achieving the title this year. The program, which is sponsored by the National Association of State Foresters, the Arbor Day Foundation, the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and the National League of Cities, requires that communities establish a board or department to carry out a tree care program as well as enact ordinances to provide direction and fund the forestry programs with at least $2 per capita. They must also celebrate Arbor Day with a community event.
“Half of Ohioans live and work in a Tree City USA community,” Robert Boyles, state forester and chief of the ODNR Division of Forestry, said in a statement.
“Cleaner air and water, reduced stormwater runoff and increased property values are just some of the important economic, environmental and health benefits that come with having more trees in any community,” he said.