Sidewalk and Tree Maintenance and Liability
It is the duty of a property owner with frontage along a public right-of-way to maintain the sidewalk area, street trees and other landscaping growing along the frontage or in the public right-of-way adjacent to the property, including in any park or parking strip between the property line and the street line.
The maintenance obligation will include, but not be limited to, sidewalk surfaces, curbs and gutters, removal of weeds and debris, tree root pruning and installing root barriers, and other maintenance, including pruning and trimming of trees, shrubs, ground cover and other landscaping within the sidewalk area and planting strips.
Under Section 5610 of the California Streets and Highway Code, a property owner is responsible for maintaining sidewalk areas (including trees in those sidewalk areas) adjoining the property. Under Street and Highways Code Section 5615, if a property owner fails to maintain the sidewalk area, the City can perform the work and proceed to collect the cost from the property owner.
The Sidewalk and Tree Maintenance and Liability, Ordinance C-2-11, was passed by City Council on February 15, 2011 and can be found in Chapter 12.18 of the Half Moon Bay Municipal Code