Miami-Dade County District 11 Commissioner Juan Zapata recently announced that he will plant more than 22 trees and 2,000 shrubs in his district by matching an insurance reimbursement fund that pays for trees and vegetation damaged or removed by motorists.
The Tree Subrogation Fund was launched in 2011 to help ensure that street trees and shrubs are replaced after car crashes. Commissioner Zapata has chosen to double the impact of this fund to grow the tree canopy in District 11, advancing the Million Trees Miami’s goal of planting one million trees by 2020.
“We are planting trees and shrubs along streets and in public rights-of-way as a commitment to our environment, as well as to enhance the aesthetics for my residents,” Commissioner Zapata said.
“I am proud to begin this natural legacy for District 11 and to contribute to the Million Trees Miami initiative,” he added.
“By funding the greening and beautification of the transportation corridors in his district, Commissioner Zapata is demonstrating the stewardship needed for Million Trees Miami to achieve its ambitious goal,” said Miami-Dade County District 9 Commissioner Dennis C. Moss, Neat Streets Miami chair. “We hope all commissioners will follow this example of maximizing the benefits of the Tree Subrogation Fund.”
To date, the Tree Subrogation Fund has collected $156,686 from insurance claims resulting from drivers who damage public property.
These funds must be targeted in public rights-of-away near where the car crashes occur. Million Trees Miami encourages tree planting to help grow Miami- Dade’s current tree canopy of approximately 14 percent to 30 percent, the national average of a healthy urban forest.