The United City of Yorkville is applying for a $10,000 tree replacement grant in the continuing battle against the invasive Emerald Ash Borer.
The grant would provide funds to replace trees removed as a result of the parasite. The city would provide matching funds in the form of staff time and labor for planting the new trees. The estimated matching costs are $12,850, according to city documents.
The grant is open to municipalities located in the Emerald Ash Borer Quarantine Zone, which does include Yorkville. The city’s population of 16,840 limits the grant amount to $10,000, according to city documents.
Emerald ash borer is a type of Asian beetle whose larvae eat the inner bark of ash trees, interrupting the tree’s ability to transport nutrients, according to the Illinois Department of Agriculture's website.
A 2009 tree inventory located over 1,600 ash trees within Yorkville. In the spring of 2011, an inventory of ash trees was collected of trees that are in fair/poor condition based on an ash tree inventory in the area near existing areas with the infestation. Trees have been removed in heavily infested areas by working from the southern end of town to the northern end, according to city reports.
Staff estimates the can replace around 100 trees, depending on the final cost of each replacement tree. All trees must be listed on the Illinois Department of Agriculture’s recommended reforestation list and be purchased from Illinois Department of Agriculture certified nurseries, according to documents.
If the city receives the grant, planting would begin in October. Officials said they have a high success rate with trees planted in the fall.
During Tuesday’s city council meeting, Laura Schraw, Interim Director of Parks & Recreation, said she hopes the city receives the grant this year. The city was unable to procure a similar grant last year.
For information on the 50/50 replacement program, resident should see the city website here.