Trees can’t wait. Here’s your chance to speak for them!
The preliminary 2022 budget is out…and doesn’t look good for public trees.
First the good news. Voices like yours are helping to push council to do the right thing! The pressure we’ve been exerting on council to increase the Urban Forestry Department’s budget is starting to pay off: a slight budget increase in the department’s operating budget has been proposed.
The bad news? The increase is insufficient to deal with the critical problems facing our public canopy.
- According to the 2022 preliminary budget, UFD’s total operating budget for 2022 will increase by $2 million.
- There is no increase to the capital budget, despite the department’s stated shortfall of several million dollars.
The operating increase is nowhere near enough to catch up on an 80% backlog in tree replacements, nor will it get us anywhere near a 7-year best practice pruning cycle (it’s at 31 years right now).
Now is not the time to let up on the pressure!
Members of the Trees Please Winnipeg Coalition will be presenting at the budget hearings on December 7th and 10th, and we hope to see many of you online or in person, helping to make the case for an additional budget increase.
Will you take action today?
- Can you sign up to speak for our trees at the budget hearings? Learn more about this here: winnipeg.ca/interhom/Budget/2022-budget/default.stm#1
- Or could you write a short submission asking council to invest more into the urban canopy?
- Have you emailed your city councillor to ask them to fight for the urban forest?
All of these actions make a real difference!
We will be encouraging council to start managing our public canopy in a sustainable way, by making a long term commitment to steadily increasing Urban Forestry’s budget over the next decade, to deal with the mounting climate-related problems it faces and will continue to face.
Trees can’t wait.
Winnipeg is already starting to experience extreme and unpredictable weather due to climate change. Public trees are an essential part of green infrastructure that will help us to be resilient in this new and uncertain normal.