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Mailbag: More thought should be put into cutting down trees

November 10, 2011

I am saddened by the decision made by the Laguna Beach City Council to remove the giant eucalyptus trees in upper Bluebird Canyon. And I am profoundly sorry, but I believe we've not yet done our due diligence.

Nobody on the council ever addressed the option of trimming the trees. I am rather new at local politics, but I must confess that I am surprised that only one of them thought that this was a middle ground where everyone can agree.

I guess I'm equally surprised at the lack of concern when 75-year-old historic trees were held up against the whims of one angry neighbor. No one ever asked why this issue was brought up at this particular time. No one ever asked why these particular five trees were being targeted. No one ever expressed the slightest bit of suspicion regarding Edison's "random" visit to the neighborhood. Please.

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And finally, no one ever addressed the glaring fact that once the rest of the neighbors heard about what was about to take place (and mind you, those that had the trees on their property were never even approached), they came out in numbers three times that of the original contingency.

Those of us that live in the shadows of these great trees are, in a word, mystified.

You missed a chance at reason. You missed a chance to say out loud that perhaps you decided too quickly, that perhaps a second look was indeed in order. Even Bank of America has admitted that they had made a mistake.

I ask as a strong supporter of nothing more than reasonable discourse: May we place this back on the agenda before the saws begin to redefine our distinctive neighborhood?

Mace Morse

Laguna Beach

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Property owners responsible for trees

Edison should do what is safe and right regarding eucalyptus trees.

One reader suggested that the city maintain control and trim these trees every three years. This should have been and still should be the property owner's responsibility. To let these trees grow out of control (and they grow very fast — trim once a year, minimum) in the first place was unconscionable. To expect the tax payers of this city pay for the maintenance of these trees is also unconscionable. To continue to have these dangerous trees around property and people is unconscionable.

It is not only the trees but the debris from these trees — branches or leaves — that are fire hazards. Are any of these property owners out there cleaning up the debris on a daily basis as it needs to be done?

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