E. Marlborough honors Mellinger for 40 years of service

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Removal of trees in question for new home construction

By Karen Cresta, Staff Writer, The Times

East Marlborough Board of Supervisors chair Richard Hannum reads a citation from State Rep. Eric Roe (R-158) honoring Roadmaster Dennis Mellinger him for 40 years of service to the township at Monday night’s board meeting. Photo courtesy, East Marlborough Township.

EAST MARLBOROUGH – The township’s Board of Supervisors kicked off Monday’s night meeting by celebrating and honoring a 40-year milestone for township roadmaster Dennis Mellinger.

Mellinger is scheduled to retire in March and began his career with the township in 1977 in the roads’ department. Board chairman Richard Hannum read a citation from Rep. Eric Roe (R-158) honoring Mellinger for his long-term commitment and service to the township. After a round of applause from the board and attendees, it was business as usual.

The board spent most of the meeting time addressing a request to remove a stand of approximately 45 trees and two specimen trees at a home construction site. The discussion continued over an hour regarding the heavily-wooded site located at 416 West Locust Lane.

The plan to construct a driveway and house on the site included removing the two specimen trees (deemed to have more value than an average tree and protected by township ordinance) larger than 36 inches wide and, according to the existing trees evaluation from the registered landscape architect, in poor condition and a safety issue. This would also make the removal exempt from the township ordinance to be replaced.

When questioned on whether the construction site could be relocated on the property, Rodderick Harrison responded, “We moved the house from the original plans when the property was bought. We wanted the site to be as natural as possible.”

“There are trees everywhere,” township engineer Jim Hatfield added.

There are also two additional specimen trees in good health on the property that could be jeopardized if the site for the house was changed.

In the end, the board agreed to hire an arborist provide a professional opinion before approving the removal of any trees. If in agreement that the trees pose a safety issue due to poor health, then any replacement of the trees will not be necessary at the site or elsewhere in the township.

“Wickersham  — that is 200 yards away from the property — didn’t need an arborist for his trees,” Harrison added.

The board agreed to act quickly and to get an answer back to Harrison so he can begin the removal process for the construction of the home.

The Tough Mudder event scheduled on May 20 and 21, at Willowdale, received approval for road closures. The two-day race includes an over-night event this year and is anticipating over 10,000 participants over the course of the weekend.

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