Damaged Trees

City of Santa Rosa Hazardous Tree Removal Work in Public Right of Way

City of Santa Rosa crews have assessed fire-damaged trees within the public right-of-way and in open space areas within the City limits to evaluate their level of damage and risk to public safety and the right of way. Burned trees that present an “imminent” risk to public safety or roadways have been removed. Right-of-way trees categorized as presenting a “moderate” risk have been left at this time.

Cal-Trans and the County of Sonoma are also assessing/ removing hazardous right-of-way trees located within their respective jurisdictions.

Removing Fire-Damaged Trees on Private Property

Whether or not you have a burned structure, if you believe you have trees on your property that are dead or likely to die within five years as a result of the fire, you may still submit a Right of Entry (ROE) form to the County of Sonoma to opt in to the government-sponsored Consolidated Debris Removal Program (managed by the State) for potential removal. The State will use a certified arborist to determine whether the trees on your property present a threat to the public Right of Way (ROW), i.e. roadways, and/or public infrastructure, fire hydrants, water meters, etc. 

If you do not wish to opt in to the State debris removal program, you must follow the City's guidance for private property tree removal for trees damaged or suspected to be damaged by the Glass Fire. This guidance is outlined below.

To privately remove fire-damaged Heritage or Protected trees, you will need to submit a Universal Planning Application along with a site plan showing the location of the tree for review and approval. View the City’s list of Heritage / Protected trees below to determine if your tree(s) trigger this requirement.

If your property’s tree(s) are not on the below list, removal may be done without approvals from the City. Please Note: It is still the property owner’s responsibility to comply with all Homeowners’ Association or Architectural Committees’ requirements for tree removal and potential replacement.

Heritage or Protected Tree List

Species —
Common Name
(in inches)
(in inches)
1. Oak Family

    (a) Quercus lobata — valley oak619
    (b) Q. agrifolia — live oak1857
    (c) Q. kelloggii — black oak1857
    (d) Q. garryana — Oregon or white oak1857
    (e) Q. chrysolepis — canyon oak1857
    (f) Q. douglasii — blue oak619
    (g) Q. wislizenii — interior live oak1857
2. Sequoia sempervirens — redwood2475
3. Umbelluloria californica — bay2475
4. Arbutus menziesii — madrone1238
5. Aesculus californica — buckeye619
6. Pseudotsugas menzesii — douglas fir2475
7. Alnus oregona — red alder1857
8. Alnus rhombifolia — white alder1857
9. Acer nacrophyllum — big leaf maple2475

When submitting the Universal Planning Application, a report or statement from a certified arborist must accompany the submittal indicating the tree is a hazard and must be removed to mitigate the hazard. The report/statement shall be on the arborist’s company letterhead and have their certification number and signature. If the application is not submitted with the arborist’s report, the standard process for tree removals will be followed. This includes a 10-day notification process where neighbors are notified and a 10-day appeal period.

Applications shall be submitted to [email protected].

If online submittals cannot be made, in-person submittals can be made by appointment only. Limited appointments are available between from 8:00 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. Monday – Friday. Please comply with all social distancing and hygiene protocols posted near the front door while at the City hall Complex. Please schedule an appointment before arriving to help maintain social distancing.

How to Schedule an Appointment:

  • The City’s appointment queuing system, Qless, has a free App that can be downloaded to your mobile device from Google Play or the Apple Store. Once installed, follow the prompts for access and scheduling your City of Santa Rosa Counter Appointment.
  • To access Qless via the internet (URL), go to srcity.org/QLess and follow the system prompts to schedule your City of Santa Rosa Counter Appointment.
  • Telephone option: For staff assistance in scheduling an appointment, please leave a voicemail at the City’ appointment request line at (707) 543-4623. Leave contact information so staff can advise you of the date/time.

PG&E Hazardous Tree Removal Work in Fire-Impacted Areas

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) contract crews are conducting inspections to identify and address hazardous trees along power lines that may have been damaged by the fire, this includes work that may impact residents/ private property. 

Per PG&E, customers can expect the following:

  • Hazardous trees are being marked to identify them for work. A tree marked "P1" (Priority 1) is fire damaged and highly likely to pose a threat to PG&E facilities/ power lines and will be removed as quickly as possible. A tree marked P2 (Priority 2) has been identified as fire damaged but not does not pose an imminent threat to PG&E facilities. P2 trees will require eventual removal to mitigate the threat, and PG&E has indicated P2 tree removal will be completed by April 2021.
  • PG&E will reach out to notify property owners who may be impacted by this tree removal work. 
  • Wood from felled trees/ pruning cannot be removed by PG&E since trees are considered assets and property that legally belong to the property owner. However, at the property owner’s request, PG&E will chip smaller limbs (4 inched in diameter or less) and can spread the chips on site. 

Customers with questions or concerns about this work should contact PG&E at 1 (800) 743-5000 or visit PGE.com/Trees.