If a tree falls in a forest, would it make a sound if no one is around to hear it? So goes the classic oft repeated philosophical thought experiment. Councilman Bernard Hamilton raised the stakes boy making us wonder if a thousand trees were to fall in the "Tree City" of Bloomfield, would anyone want to stay here?
Monday's Council Conference Meeting climaxed with Hamilton's stunning suggestion that any tree taller than 15 feet or 20 inches around should be cut down below the wires or removed in order to prevent future problems from storms like Sandy. Township Forester Steve Schuckman was on hand to respond to Hamilton’s proposal. Schuckman suggested that the council would be choosing between forest and desert.
If he had made such a proposal in Montclair or many other towns, Hamilton’s ‘modest proposal’ would have got him laughed out of the meeting. Thankfully, Schuckman was present to provide a reality check. Besides making the town even more flood prone and just plain ugly, it would bankrupt the budget and make Bloomfield even more notorious to prospective residents than the Memphis issue has done. At the end of the discussion, Hamilton promised to return with a revised plan.
Hamilton is reportedly planning to run for Essex County Freeholder next year. Will the tree chopping plan become a plank of his platform?