HomeHaddonfield NewsPublic Works’ teams complete removal of 223 trees

Public Works’ teams complete removal of 223 trees

Stumps and stalks will be addressed later in the year

Longtime Haddonfield resident and Shade Tree Commission Chair Robin Potter is recognized with a certificate of appreciation for her 10 years of service at the April 25 commissioner’s meeting. With her are Commissioner Kevin Roche (left to right), Mayor Colleen Bianco Bezich and Commissioner Frank Troy. (EMILY LIU/The Sun)

Operation T.R.E.E. is nearing its end and has far surpassed its initial goal of cutting down 150 dead or dying trees in Haddonfield.

The effort began as a way to catch up with infected ash trees that turn brittle and break apart easily once they die. Two teams from the Public Works Department have taken down 223 trees as of the recent commissioner’s meeting on April 25.

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Commissioner Frank Troy estimates the teams will finish with around 230 trees cut to a stalk or stump. Those will be removed by external companies later during the year. 

“I often get asked, ‘Are you planting any trees?’ and we are,” said Troy. “(We’ve been planting trees) under the leadership of (Shade Tree Commission Chair) Robin Potter for years.”

The borough recently received 80 trees for planting and will receive another 80 in the fall. 

“We’re trying to get into the rhythm of about 180 (trees planted) a year, especially when we’re taking down maybe 200 a year,” Troy noted. “Ultimately that will level off as the dead trees are taken down.”

The Public Works Department is also replacing and adding new signs around the borough.

In other board of commissioners’ business, members passed four ordinances on second reading that include a new noise ordinance with specific sound specifications and permitting of Sunday sales and their hours. 

In response to resident Anne Hearing, who asked how the noise ordinance would be enforced and whether it would make it any easier to report violations by delivery trucks at odd hours, Mayor Colleen Bianco Bezich encouraged the community to report such  situations to police using the non-emergency line.

“The problem is if people don’t call, we have no record of it,” the mayor explained. “ … I think the best thing to do is if people like yourself or your neighbors experience the problem, they should call. And then we have a report of the incident and whatever the outcome is, there is data there that says there is a problem or a recurrence.”

Bianco Bezich noted there were no measurements in the previous noise ordinance for what is too loud as that can be subjective. With the new ordinance, the county health department can send someone to measure the sound. The mayor also acknowledged that while some sounds can be loud – like leaf blowers and forklift trucks – they aren’t going to be prohibited as long as they occur during normal business hours.

In other news, engineer Douglas Johnson and Troy said they have begun pre-construction meetings for the underground storage, sump pump and manhole realignment project on Homestead Avenue in July. The goal is to alleviate flooding. 

The borough also recognized Robin Potter for her 10 years as chair of the Shade Tree Commission. She is a member of the New Jersey Shade Tree Foundation board, board chair of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society and a Camden County Master Gardener. 

“I don’t think we could find a better example of who has made Haddonfield a better place than Robin Potter,” Troy said. “She is extremely committed. She’s made a great organization fully functional.”

Commissioners also proclaimed May as Interfaith Caregivers Month and appointed Bernadette Green as deputy borough clerk

The next meeting will be a work session on May 9, at 6:30 p.m. in borough hall.

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