Innovation in Rancho Cordova
The City of Rancho Cordova has a pilot grant program to help residents improve their property by removing dead trees and old tree stumps and replacing them with new trees. According to the program's web site, the city, "has a goal of planting a tree a day to improve air quality, conserve energy, reduce environmental health risks, and beautify the City." The program is aimed at residents whose income levels who would not otherwise enable them to afford dead tree and stump removal or replanting. Property owners with limited incomes usually do not remove dead or dying trees (which can present safety hazards and spread parasitic mistletoe) or old stumps and they often cannot afford to plant new trees on their property. Those circumstances can adversely affect neighboring property values and certainly do not help the city with the benefits of a healthy tree canopy -- e.g. aesthetics, shade, wildlife habitat and air pollution filtration. The City of Rancho Cordova's innovative program is a good example of how cities tend to look INWARD to improve their infrastructure and quality of municipal services, aiming at sustainability. Counties are more likely to look OUTWARD, via sprawl, for developer-driven new infrastructure and taxpayers, aiming at one-time revenues without much concern for long-time infrastructure maintenance costs and municipal service commitments.