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Utility Tree Certification Member Nurseries increase sales The Utility Tree Certificate Program is a great way to bring new customers into your nursery. Washington State Nursery and Landscape Association partners with Snohomish County Public Utility District, Puget Sound Energy, Seattle City Light and City of Lynnwood to bring you this program. To encourage their customers to remove unsafe trees, these utilities may give certificates to the customers to provide replacement plant material. The issuance is a goodwill gesture to thank the customer for helping the utility to reduce problems affecting the utility lines. These certificates can only be redeemed at WSNLA nurseries. So this is an opportunity to not only redeem the certificate, but develop a relationship with a new customer and provide add on sales as well. These programs are truly a win-win for the utility and your nursery. When the customer brings the certificates to your nursery, you apply them like a gift certificate to the purchase. Be sure to have the customer sign that they received the plant material. Then you fill in the information required on the front of the certificate and mail the utility copy to WSNLA with an invoice stating which utility they are from and the certificate numbers being redeemed. The association collects the certificates, does bulk invoicing on your behalf to the utilities and reimburses you for them. Please be aware that each utility has different criteria so you and your staff want to be sure to read the back of the certificate to double check that what the customer is purchasing is what the certificate can be redeemed for. The utility’s purpose is to replace oversized plant material with appropriate sized trees and shrubs so power lines are not compromised. Snohomish County PUD

certificates can only be redeemed in Snohomish and Island counties as they are a private utility. The other certificates can be redeemed at any WSNLA member nursery. The certificates are redeemable for one year from the date of issue. If they are over a year old, the customer should have an extension letter from the utility. Each utility has a different face value for their certificates so pay attention to that. Snohomish County PUD and City of Lynnwood have two different denominations of certificates in circulation as well. Because you process certificates like you would a gift card, you can apply the balance towards tax as well as product. The WSNLA office processes Utility Tree Certificates payments to member nurseries once a month, generally by the 10th, for the previous month’s certificates that you have submitted. To submit, please send the WSNLA office your invoice along with the WSNLA copy of the certificate. Your invoice number wil be referenced on the payment. If you are in an area where the trees have recently been trimmed, consider posting a sign on your reader board or website that you accept Utility Tree Certificates. This program can definitely increase your sales. Also don’t hesitate to contact Holly at the WSNLA office: or 800-672-7711 with specific questions. Don’t miss out on this great program! Washington State Nursery & Landscape Association - 17

B&B Online - February 2015  
B&B Online - February 2015  

Member Leadership Awards: WSNLA honors members for industry service