7 CSR 10-6.085 - Cutting and Trimming of Vegetation on Right-of-Way

Current through Register Vol. 46, No. 24, December 15, 2021

PURPOSE: This amendment removes unnecessary restrictive language and modifies provisions relating to the cutting and trimming of vegetation on right of way to clear a billboard's visibility zone.

(1) Permits. To promote highway safety, a permit issued by the department's authorized representative is required to cut or trim any vegetation in front of any lawful sign. A vegetation permit may be denied or limited if the plan is deemed to be detrimental to the stability of the state right-of-way as determined by the department's authorized representative.
(A) Performance Bond. A performance bond in an amount up to one thousand dollars ($1,000) is required to ensure restoration of highway right-of-way.
(C) (B) Duration. All permits expire after three hundred sixty five (365) days.
(2) Access. To promote highway safety, access to the cutting or trimming area shall be from private property or outer roadways and cannot be made from the through traffic roadway of any highway maintained by the department without written permission from the department. Parking of equipment or placement of materials on the traffic lanes or shoulders is strictly prohibited.
(3) Conditions. To promote highway safety, the following conditions apply to trimming and cutting of vegetation on highway right-of-way:
(A) Removal. All vegetation trimmed or cut will be removed from the right-of-way and no burning on the right-of-way is permitted. Trees are to be cut to ground level;
(B) Damage to Right-of-Way. The applicant is responsible for any damage to the right-of-way. Any destruction of turf requires the applicant to restore the right-of-way to a like or better condition, which may require seeding, mulching, or sodding of the right-of-way which has been disturbed;
(C) Herbicides. Only herbicides approved by the department's authorized representative may be used to trim or remove vegetation. The applicant will comply with the Missouri Pesticide Use Act, sections 281.005 through 281.115, RSMo.
(D) Destruction of Vegetation. A vegetation permit will be revoked if an applicant destroys desired vegetation due to excessive cutting, trimming, or inappropriate use of herbicides on vegetation. If revoked, the department will retain and collect against any bonds filed.
(E) Indemnity. Applicants shall agree to indemnify and hold harmless the commission against any damage or harm to persons, including commission employees, or property which may occur as a result of or in the course of its cutting or trimming of vegetation and use of herbicides;
(F) Trimming of Trees. Trees of any size may be trimmed in accordance with the following guidelines:
1. Trimming is permitted any time of year;
2. A tree may not have more than one-third (1/3) of its canopy removed in a single pruning operation. For pruning operations, the "National Arborist Association Standards" shall be used as a guideline to insure trees are being pruned properly and all pruning must be done in accordance with "National Arborist Association Standards." Pruning cuts should be made so that the tree may close the resulting wound as easily as possible. Generally, remove parts of a twig or branch at their origin. Remove tips of branches back to a good bud or to the next larger branch. The final pruning cut should be made along the natural branch collar and not flush with the trunk. Any additional pruning of this magnitude cannot be repeated for three (3) full years (thirty-six (36) months) on hardwood species. A "Tree Pruning Chart" developed by MoDOT is used to determine the maximum amount of canopy that can be removed in a single pruning operation. A copy of the chart may be obtained by contacting the area permit specialist; and
3. In situations where pruning is to be done on a stand of trees and it is not practical to distinguish individual trees from the stand, the stand of trees should be judged by the canopy height of the stand. The amount of tree height to be removed should be determined from the "Tree Pruning Chart" according to the canopy height of the stand of trees. Proper tree pruning practices are to be observed in reducing the height of the stand of trees, just as it would be for an individual tree. Brush over six feet (6') that is approved for removal should be cut first and the stump(s) treated with herbicides. Illustrations are available to assist in proper pruning. A copy may be obtained by contacting the area permit specialist; and
(G) Destruction of Vegetation. A vegetation permit will be revoked if an applicant destroys desired vegetation due to excessive trimming or inappropriate use of herbicides on vegetation. If the permit is revoked due to excessive trimming or inappropriate use of herbicides, the department will retain and collect against any bonds filed.
(4) Informal Hearing on Denial of Permit to Cut or Trim.
(A) Request for Informal Hearing. If denied a permit to cut or trim vegetation, the applicant will have twenty (20) working days to request an informal hearing for the purpose of appealing the denial by submitting its request for an informal hearing to the Outdoor Advertising Manager, Missouri Department of Transportation, PO Box 270, Jefferson City, MO 65102.
(B) Procedure. If the applicant requests an informal hearing, the department's authorized representative will advise the applicant of the time, date, and place. This is not a contested case under Chapter 536, RSMo. The rules of evidence will not apply at the hearing.

Notes

7 CSR 10-6.085
AUTHORITY: section 226.150 and sections 226.500-226.600, RSMo 2000 and Supp. 2013. Original rule filed June 15, 1993, effective Jan. 31, 1994. Amended: Filed Aug. 31, 1999, effective March 30, 2000. Amended: Filed April 15, 2003, effective Nov. 30, 2003. Amended: Filed Oct. 3, 2013, effective May 31, 2014. Amended by Missouri Register March 15, 2018/Volume 43, Number 6, effective 4/30/2018

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