Letter: Utility's tree-trimming is impacting Shelton's rural character

To the Editor:

As president of the Olde Ripton Garden Club in Shelton, I am writing to express our concerns over the extensive tree trimming program taking place in Shelton.

We realize the need for removing hazardous trees and branches that pose a risk to the electric utility infrastructure, but we are opposed to the excessive trimming and removal of healthy tall trees.

Tall and tall growing healthy trees need to be retained and pruned in accordance with professional pruning standards.

We were aware that tree trimming would be taking place but had no idea of the amount of trimming this would involve. Sections of White Hills have been severely trimmed and the streets have lost much of their appeal.

Considering the fact that the city of Shelton has been so active in acquiring open space, we hope that we would take a much more restrictive approach to tree trimming.

With the recent storms and power outages, we realize the need to trim some trees to protect the power lines. However, this can be done without the removal of tall healthy trees.

We need to remember all the benefits of roadside trees — reduced energy costs, increased property values, improved air quality, reduced flooding and erosion problems, habitat and food for birds and animals, and a pleasing community character.

Hopefully, the United Illuminating Co. and our community leaders can work together to retain the rural community character that we all enjoy in Shelton while also maintaining the utility infrastructure.

Joyce Donnelly

President, Olde Ripton Garden Club