Michigan Township Fines Property Owners $450K For Cutting Down Their Own Trees

Canton, Michigan wants to fine two brothers almost half a million dollars accusing them of cutting down their own trees.

Government overreach at its worst. What is the point of buying real estate if you do not own it and use as you please without undue government restrictions?

Federal law and state law both supersede local ordinances and both shield farmers from this kind of behavior by local governments.

Their intention was to rid their Michigan property of invasive trees and bushes and replace them with Christmas trees. Come on Canton, where’s your Christmas spirit?


Canton, Mich. wants to fine two brothers almost half a million dollars, accusing them of cutting down their own trees. The duo allegedly chopped down more than 1,400 trees on their 16-acre property, according to MLive.com.

Gary and Matt Percy apparently were clearing some space for a Christmas tree farm in a township that expects new trees to be planted before old growth can be felled. Their attorney, Michael Pattwell, said Monday that this is a clear case of a bylaw inappropriately trumping property rights, and the $450,000 fine is way out of line. More

Are y’all paying attention? This will be the norm if you give the Democrats any more power. They do NOT believe in personal property rights.

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Brothers Gary and Matt Percy could face nearly half a million dollars in penalties for removing more than 1,400 trees from their property without permission from Canton Township.

The two own a 16-acre property off of Yost Road, east of Belleville Road in Canton Township with the intention of creating a Christmas tree farm on the plot, according to their attorney, Michael J. Pattwell.

The land was filled with “invasive plants like phragmites, buckthorn and autumn olive,” he said.

But the township requires land owners to gain permission and promise new tree plantings before cutting down existing forestry, especially for landmark or historic trees.

The township had an arborist compare the parcel to an adjacent property with the similar forestry to estimate how many trees were removed.

Township attorney Kristin Kolb said “it was all part of a forest.”

“They identified certain plots,” Kolb said. “They identified the number or type of trees and did some math to figure out approximately how many trees.”

The arborist estimated 1,385 trees with trunk diameter of six inches or more were removed. That could mean $225 to $300 per tree in penalties. Anther 100 landmark trees were also removed, the township estimated, meaning another $450 each. More

Property Rights are under attack in many parts of the country… There’s no true property ownership when you pay government rent in the form of property taxes and must apply for permission from the government to utilize your own land.


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