A Jacksonville city tree protection amendment was upheld in the First District Court of Appeals Monday, September 26, 2005, with the assistance and support of Jim Terrell and Wayne Hogan. The amendment gives local land developers the option of not destroying protected trees, replacing trees either on the property or elsewhere or, as a last resort, paying into a fund for the planting and maintenance of replacement trees.
“This is a significant victory for reasonable management of development in the community,” said Hogan, president of Terrell • Hogan. “Our tree canopy and all the benefits it provides can be protected from destruction by preservation and by mitigation.”
The plaintiffs, who were area developers, property owners and The Northeast Florida Builders Association, claimed the amendment, which was overwhelmingly passed by local voters, is an unconstitutional tree tax. The trial court held it is not a tax.
The firm intervened in the action on behalf of the Petitioners Committee, including Terrell • Hogan legal assistant and state Representative Audrey Gibson, which initially placed the amendment on the ballot.