I hope this email finds everyone enjoying the beautiful fall weather and colors we have been experiencing in Virginia Beach! As I reflect back over the past year Friends of Live Oaks has many things we can be thankful for, and our members are at the top of this least! Several accomplishments really stand out:
We have significantly grown our funds balance thanks to the dues and generous gifts of many
We now have officially partnered with our first business
We have greatly increased our social media presence and outreach
We have visited over 14 sites to offer property owners assistance and suggested advice on how to best care for their live oaks
We have purchased a new banner for use at events
We have started making changes to our website to better inform the public and our members
We have harvested a number of live oak seedlings grown by our foraging squirrel partners (who have also eaten a number of these seedlings as well!) to donate for adoption and planting
We participated in the City’s Treetopia event at Mount Trashmore on November 6 until poor weather resulted in its cancellation
We have grown our partnership with local developers and builders to increase our efforts at protecting existing live oaks before and during the redevelopment and development process
We are currently exploring the potential to transplant a large live oak which would be lost to development due to its location on a lot in the Ocean Park area
As we move towards the end of 2021 I am optimistic that these accomplishments and many others will continue into 2022!
Below is the agenda for our next meeting on November 22, 2021 at 4:30 PM. The agenda is organized around FOLO’s priorities for 2021, and specifics on these priorities reflect our focus areas for this year. At this meeting we will look to 2022 and how we want to refine or revise these priorities to keep our momentum as a group. Make sure to bring your input for the times listed under old business, as well as any new business ideas to share.
We will also have a Zoom meeting option. The link to the November 22nd Zoom meeting is as follows will be sent to you after contacting us.
We are meeting in person at the Ocean Park Rescue Squad Building located at 3769 East Stratford Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23455.
I suggest parking in the rear of the building or along a side street. You can enter the building at the rear door located next to the rear parking area. I will put a sign on the door to the room where we are meeting.
A reenactment clause was added to each bill. They will come up again in the 2022 session for reenactment. This clause allows for the bills to remain as they are, or to be changed if desired. A stakeholder group was created at the end of the 2021 session, chaired by the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of Natural Resources to evaluate the bills further and report its recommendations back to the House and Senate by November 1, 2021. I’ll keep an eye out for this report and pass it along when it is released. The House Bill will be referred to its Committee on Counties, Cities and Towns. The Senate bill will be referred to its Local Government Committee.
As of now, the House Committee members for our City are: Askew and Guy
As of now, the Senate Committee members for our City are: DeSteph and Kiggans
There could be changes to these members after the November 2 election.
2- Write your local House and Senate representatives and ask them to support reenacting their respective bills during the 2022 session. You can find your representatives here: https://whosmy.virginiageneralassembly.gov There could be changes to these members after the November 2 election.
“A. Any locality with a population density of at least 75 persons per square mile or any locality within the Chesapeake Bay watershed may adopt an ordinance providing for the planting and replacement of trees during the development process…”
“3. That the provisions of the first enactment of this act shall not become effective unless reenacted by the 2022 Session of the General Assembly.”
“In Arlington and Virginia Beach, two of the most recent municipalities to conduct tree canopy assessments, canopy is holding steady on municipal property but trending downward on private property due to infill, redevelopment, and homeowner removal.
Loss of biodiversity is another critical challenge we face which may impact ecosystems as much as climate change, pollution, and other major forms of environmental stress. Trees provide food, habitat, shelter, and breeding areas need- ed to restore and sustain Virginia’s wildlife biodiversity.
SOLUTION We need to prioritize the preservation of intact forests as well as individual mature trees during development. For example, during the engineering process, consider how to protect natural resources first and adjust site plans accordingly….”
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