Reader view: Leave tree-removal decisions to homeowners

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The following was sent to Edmonds City Council members. It is republished here at the author’s request.

Most Washington residents are tree lovers. When they make the decision to remove a tree that threatens their home and personal safety, or that has grown so large that it appears to be “the wrong tree in the wrong environment,” they do so reluctantly. Having lived in Edmonds most of my life and selling property here for almost 38 years, this is not a hasty decision.

However, like all living things, trees have a lifespan and one need only take a walk in one of our local forest parks such as Hutt, Yost or Pine Ridge to witness the damage that occurs as a tree or part of a tree ages. storms or gravity. Unless the city is willing to fund the loss of property and perhaps, worse, the loss of a resident’s life, it must continue to allow owners of personal property to make these difficult decisions — without the expense and undue input of Bureaucrats who can’t do it. Corporations who impose their biased views on each of us.

I’ve seen this city remove trees, even entire tree verges, which, as they mature, encroach onto city sidewalks and streets. Public spaces remain the responsibility of the city government, but as long as no tree is in an environmentally sensitive area, we cannot allow the government to take away decisions about the properties we maintain, beautify, and pay taxes and insurance on. This is our private domain and none of the business of the liberal cesspool who believe they have the right to invade all aspects of our private lives. This is a true snapshot of the loss of freedom.

By Debbie McCallum

Debbie McCallum lives in Edmonds.

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