A Port Washington homeowner is hopeful that the city will change its ways when it comes to tree removal after a tree on his property was cut down without his prior knowledge.
Richard Thompson, who lives on Parknoll Lane, returned home last week to find just a stump remaining of the healthy ash tree that once welcomed him home.
"I planted both of these trees when we built our home 29 years ago," he told the Port Washington Common Council on Tuesday night. "We valued these trees and took additional steps to hire a arborist to keep these trees healthy."
Thompson said his first thought was that it may have been infested with emerald ash borer; officials confirmed that EAB was found in the city on June 15. Thompson called the city to find out the reason for the tree removal, and was told it was "in decline," with no further explanation.
"I would have been glad to pay for some treatment to keep the tree, as I've done in the past," he told the council.
City arborist Jon Crain said the tree was actually removed to save the larger ash tree on the same lot, according to an Ozaukee Press article. The larger tree is infected by the emerald ash borer, and the extra space will increase its chance at survival.
Thought it's too late to save the healthy ash tree that was removed from Thompson's yard, he told the council he hopes they'd support adding a process to notify homeowners before taking such actions on their property.
Aldermen said they would refer the matter of notifying homeowners to the Board of Public works, the Ozaukee Press article said.
"I can't get my tree back but perhaps yours can be saved," he said.