By JIMMY LAWTON
OGDENSBURG – The city will contract with Black River Tree Removal LLC, to take out 54 trees along Paterson Street before the end of March.
City councilors voted unanimously Monday to hire the firm for $10,500, about $2,000 less than the next low bidder and about $17,000 less than the highest.
City Manager John Pinkerton said the crew would need to remove the trees before March 31 in order to pay for the service using Department of Transportation funding as part of the ongoing Paterson Street Project.
Pinkerton said the trees are considered a nesting ground for the endangered northern long eared bat and that the trees could only removed using grant money between the months of November and March.
Deputy Mayor Mike Morley was concerned that the lower bid might mean the city would be hauling debris for the company, but Pinkerton said that was not the case.
Morley also questioned what would happen with the scrap wood.
Pinkerton said that while the city cannot contractually direct the company on what to do with the wood, the plan was to place it in a separate portion of the city dump. If that occurs, Pinkerton said the city would be able to sell the lumber.
“It’s up to them,” he said.
Councilor Jennifer Stevenson said driving down seeing the “X’s” painted on trees along Paterson Street was startling and asked Pinkerton if plans to replace the trees had been modified since the original scope of the project.
Pinkerton said new trees would be planted, but noted that they would not be the large maples that are currently there due to potential problems they might pose to power lines in the future.