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Breckenridge Offers Cash To Homeowners Who Thin Trees

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BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. (CBS4) – A Colorado mountain town is offering cash to residents who help to mitigate wildfire danger by cutting down trees on their property.

The conditions around Breckenridge are getting dry, and town officials who are worried about the threat of wildfires are hoping residents will get serious about defensible space.

“We’re not clear cutting properties, but we are trying to reduce fuels,” Breckenridge spokesman Sgt. Matthew Collver said.

The town is offering up to $200, with $10 for each tree that is taken out that lowers the fire danger. Collver said residents need to get inspections first, and that each property will be inspected on its own merit.

“You can’t just go out and start cutting down trees and then call us asking for money,” Collver said.

The town is targeting three main neighborhoods. They say many trees next to homes in those neighborhoods are too close to roofs. They estimate there are approximately 1,000 properties that are a concern.

“These neighborhoods have a lot of work that needs to be completed when it comes to fire mitigation (and) lots of fuels that need to be reduced,” Collver said.

Collver said they are working with a guideline of having a 3 foot barrier around the edge of the house. He also said there are some simple steps homeowners should be taking, such as getting rid of dead leaves on the roof.

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