Builder to Pay County in Tree Removal Plan

A Calabasas developer has agreed to pay the Los Angeles County forester and fire warden up to $400,000 to oversee the removal and planting of oak trees at a large Calabasas housing development.

The Baldwin Co. had previously received preliminary county approval to remove 1,800 oak trees to make way for 550 houses east of Las Virgenes Road, much of it on land previously designated ecologically significant by county planners.

But one condition of that approval is that the company must transplant 300 of the mature trees and plant more than 3,000 oak saplings in the vicinity of its project. Under the agreement approved Tuesday, the forester and fire warden will monitor the company’s progress and Baldwin will pay for the county employees’ time, up to $40,000 a year for the next 10 years.