BERLIN — Some local residents say the recent culling of maple trees along Worthington Ridge by Eversource Energy has negatively impacted the character of the neighborhood.
“They’ve cut down all these trees and trimmed some others,” said Arthur Powers, a Worthington Ridge resident, adding that a number of neighbors have contacted him about the tree removal. “It’s more like stump ridge than Worthington Ridge.”
He estimated that around 20 trees had been removed, many large maples planted after a 1938 hurricane decimated trees in the area.
Eversource spokesman Mitch Gross said the company returns to neighborhoods every four years to evaluate trees, removing or trimming those that pose a threat to power lines. This year, the company is investing $83 million in tree work across the state, with contractors working year round.
“Trees are still the number one cause of outages,” he said. “We also understand our customers love their trees. It’s about maintaining a balance.”
While he feels not all the trees needed to be culled, Powers lauded Eversource for getting permission from landowners and added that he can’t blame the company for trying to prevent power outages. With the trees gone, Powers said the issue is now the stumps.
Public Works Director Mike Ahern said the town isn’t responsible for removing stumps on stretches of land between the sidewalk and road, and Gross said it’s the responsibility of landowners to remove them.
“We’ve got a mess there that’s got to be cleaned up,” Powers said.
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