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Fixes set for South Greensburg Community Park marred by tree-cutting

| Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

Work will begin this week to repair a section of South Greensburg Community Park damaged last month during tree-cutting, a borough councilman said.

Carl Weaver, who is affiliated with Mt. View Lumber of Smicksburg, Indiana County, will oversee the work, Councilman Bob Thomas said during a meeting on Monday.

“I would say Wednesday or Thursday he should be here to do the work,” said Thomas, who led borough efforts to cut the trees, a decision that caused a public outcry.

The work will involve adding water bars, grass seed and straw to an area that was damaged as trees were dragged to trucks by Mt. View, Thomas said.

A Westmoreland Conservation District official ordered the remediation work to be done when he inspected the area July 15.

Tony Quadro, conservation district assistant manager and a forester, described the violation “as more minor” and said he would give the borough a few weeks to correct the problem.

Citizens formed a committee and packed a July 14 council meeting to oppose the tree-cutting and question why the work was not put out for bid.

They further asked why there was a rush to cut the trees and why the borough sold them for only $10,000, when council could have gotten more. They questioned why the contract set no limit on the number of trees cut.

During the July 14 meeting, council agreed to return the $10,000 check to Mt. View and to declare the contract “null and void.”

Council further set up a committee consisting of three councilmen and three residents to look at needs in the park.

The committee, which consists of Councilmen Scott Hixson, Anthony Iezzi and Jeff Fajt and residents Deb Muse, Jamie Bartley and Mike Rosensteel, is scheduled to hold its first meeting on Wednesday.

Rosensteel anticipated the meeting would involve setting up ground rules for the committee to operate.

In another matter on Monday, Alex Riddel asked council to remove “rubber tires and products” as violations under the borough property maintenance code.

Riddel said he received a letter from the borough police chief that he is in violation of the code for tires on his Jamison Avenue property.

“I have several tires on my property, and I'm not interfering with any of my neighbors,” Riddel said.

He called them spare tires for his vehicles. Someone would have to go onto his property to see them, he added.

The restriction is in the code to avoid unsightly tires accumulating on borough properties, council members Tom Yarnell and Jennifer Putt replied.

“It's there to protect your neighbors and everyone around you,” Yarnell added.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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