Although Dr. Seuss’s Lorax might not agree with the decision made by the Mattapoisett Planning Board in concert with Tree Warden Roland Cote regarding the removal of trees at 86 North Street, the homeowners Walter and Cecile Callahan certainly do. After careful consideration of all the trees in question along one of Mattapoisett’s important scenic byways, six of 13 trees will be removed.
Board members, along with Cote, made a site visit and reviewed each and every tree the couple had requested removal of. Cote said, “one tree has been chopped by NStar” and really was no longer a viable tree. Other trees were selected for removal either because they are diseased or were weaklings that would never mature well.
The number of trees finally selected for culling was also supported by the Mattapoisett Tree Committee. The Board approved the number of trees and the specific trees to be removed. One further note, which the Lorax might have liked: Much of the hardwood from the culled trees will be milled into fence posts.
The next meeting was to discuss with John Boza of Gail’s Goodies and More a repaving project that had not been vetted through the Planning Board or other boards prior to work being done. Mrs. Boza was present to let the board know how and why the work had been done without their approval. Boza told them that the original parking area had been paved but after underground were removed stones had been put down instead of repaving at that time. She said that she had conferred with her abutting commercial neighbors and with Building Inspector Andrew Bobola, who had informed her a permit was not required. However, Chair Tom Tucker said the issue was storm water runoff. Boza said she had also received a letter from the Conservation Commission on this matter and after meeting with them, they were now satisfied. The board requested a letter from the contractor who had completed the work stating the square footage that had been repaved to ensure it was under 5,000 sq. ft. Boza said she was happy to supply that information.
Planning Board member Ron Merlo made a public announcement reiterating what others from various boards had implored the public to do – complete the open space survey on the Town of Mattapoisett website. He said it was only 25 questions, but the information was invaluable to helping the town craft a land use plan that met the needs of all interested parties. Only 51 residents have taken the 10-minute survey. Given the number of registered voters, that is a woefully small number, officials said. Merlo urged the public to take just a few minutes to complete a very important aspect of participatory town management. Go to www.mattapoisett.net and click on the “survey” button to take the survey.
After approving minutes from the last meeting, the board completed the necessary appointment of their chair and clerk. Remaining in place until the end of his term, Tucker continues as the chairman. Merlo will also remain in place as the clerk. Next meeting is Aug. 19.
By Marilou Newell