American Transmission Co. in June began accepting applications for their community planting program, now in its third year. The program is part of Grow Smart, which supports tree and vegetation planting in municipalities in ATC’s service area. Eligible cities, villages, towns, counties and tribes may apply for financial support for planting projects on public property within their community. Since the program’s inception, ATC has awarded nearly $130,000 to 94 eligible municipalities and counties within its service area.
To qualify, communities must commit that all current and future planting plans and urban forestry activities near high-voltage electric transmission lines will comply with ATC’s maintenance standards. “By applying for the community planting program, communities across our service territory have an opportunity to beautify their communities and plant trees outside of the electric transmission system right-of-way. This program helps communities understand that trees and transmission lines are an unsafe combination,” said ATC Environmental and Local Relations Manager Greg Levesque. “Keeping trees out of the right-of-way also keeps the public safe and the transmission system reliable.”
ATC is accepting applications through Sept. 30, and award recipients will be selected and announced by the end of the year. ATC will accept one application per community, and awards range from $100 to $5,000.