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I've decided to start a discussion on the shade tree controversy so everyone's comments are accessible from one place. 

At my house we are having a tree completely cut down because it is being eaten by carpenter ants.  From the Ridley Park Borough website: "A permit shall be required to cut down or to do major pruning to a Shade Tree. Shade Tree’s on any tree that is between the sidewalk and the street."  Our tree is not in that area and we do not need a permit. 

The two sycamores in the picture are on Purcell Street and they are between the sidewalk and street, so a permit is needed.   That is the definition of a "shade tree".  I think the difference is that any tree between the sidewalk and street is considered "public" area, so needs a permit.  I would not want the borough to be able to tell me what I can or cannot do on my own private property, but in the area pictured any changes to trees affect the appearance of the whole street.

The picture was taken by Howard McCoy.

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For the record:  For tonight's advertised, public Shade Tree Commission meeting, May 11, no one (except me) showed up.  Not the Chair, not the Secretary, not the treasurer, not even Linda Shockley. And not the Council Liaison.  And no one posted a notice on the Borough Hall door.

You shouldn't have to do this, but have you ever thought of sending reminders to the other members about the meeting?

The reason I suggest that you be the one to send reminders is, you obviously are the best one at knowing when the meeting is scheduled.


I had no intention of showing up.  I don't know if I want to join the STC yet.  Who would be responsible for posting the notice?  The chair?  Who is that?


Since you are not a member of the STC, you don't have a legal responsibility to attend--unlike the sworn members.  Nevertheless, I think you have attended more of the STC meetings this year than has the current Chairperson Krista Cesarine.  Thanks for your interest.

@Linda,  For your interest in our Community Shade Trees, consider this:  This evening, Monday, August 10, 2015, no one (except myself) showed up for the scheduled Shade Tree Commission monthly meeting.  Not the Council Liaison, or his substitute; not the "Chairperson," not the "finance officer," not the "secretary."  The absentees include two spouses of current Councilors, and a Borough Employee.  These individuals are (supposed to be) responsible for the Borough's wealth of Community Trees, and the yearly funds budgeted for maintaining safe conditions in our Parks and right-of-way. Another reason our property values are sinking??


If there isn't going to be a shade tree meeting, Tim should have received an e-mail from the Shade Tree chairperson. I also know that there are members of council, & shade tree members who don't want Tim Devaney being a member.  Members of our current council have tried to replace Tim once before.  Tim is viewed by some people in RP as a trouble maker. Ask other past members of the Shade tree commission.

I got that, but right now Tim's guilty of doing the same thing over & over and expecting different results.  If he shoots an e-mail to other members of the STC, then at least they won't have the excuse that they "forgot" the meeting or had something else scheduled & "forgot" to tell him.

@Linda, There are members of the STC who could care less about an e-mail from Tim.  They want Tim off of the STC  This is the truth.  STC doesn't need Tim's input, they keep on doing anything they want anyway.

It still frankly pisses me off that there are all these regulations about shade trees but not one word about requiring the trees to be kept healthy by being checked periodically.  That could lead to a tree suddenly falling on a house & killing people or at the least, ruining property.  Our neighbor has really tall trees that he only has checked by a professional if we nag him into it.  If one of those trees falls & kills us, will the STC come to our funerals and pay our heirs for a wrongful death?

@Linda,  Actually that is one of the primary responsibilities and reasons why it should be a good thing for the community to have a knowledgeable, active Shade Tree Commission.  It is spelled out in the Ordinance.  An inventory is required which records the condition of every Street Tree.  PS:  Tell Kenny to stop the BS or, instead of innuendos, how about if he starts naming names?  I'll bet he either can't or won't.


"Tell Kenny to stop the BS".  Well, since he'll see this too, I think you just did.


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