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City urges property owners to check on contractor license before hiring tree removal help

BEMIDJI - Numerous tree removal contractors have arrived in Bemidji to offer assistance after Monday's storm, and city officials urge property owners to check whether the service is licensed.

The City of Bemidji requires a license for any person in the business of trimming or removal of trees within city limits.

In a news release issued Friday, the city said the license "serves to protect residents by establishing that a contractor has adequate skill and equipment to provide the trimming and removal services, that the contractor has liability insurance coverage in place to cover its activities, and that as a condition of issuance of the license the contractor file a surety bond."

Monday's storm, packing 80-mph winds, damaged thousands of trees. The city plans curbside pickup of tree debris starting next Monday.

Property owners who are considering hiring a person or business to assist with trimming, cutting and/or removal and cleanup of storm damaged trees is asked to call the City Clerk's office to check whether the business is licensed in Bemidji.

The phone number to call is 759-3570.