There once was a time when property rights were protected. There once was a time when someone couldn’t simply come onto another person’s property, do as they please, and leave without consulting the property owner the entire way. There once was a time when property owners were permitted to say “No! Get off my property!” and it was respected. Apparently, those times are gone and today we live in a world where in which certain companies are protected by local, county, and state governments to do as they please without fear of reprisal.
That is what I’m dealing with today. After dropping my daughter off at her grandparents’ house, I returned home to find workers with Davey Tree Service all over my property and the two maple trees which used to beautifully canopy my front yard utterly destroyed.
Thanks to a door hanger left on my house about a week ago, I knew Duquesne Light had contracted with Davey to do some tree trimming in my area. I knew they were coming. I knew they were required to take some limbs away from the power lines. This has been a fairly standard practice every year I’ve owned my property. It’s never been a problem. They’ve usually been quite respectful and pleasant. The trees would get a light, even trim and everyone was happy. The power company maintained their reliability in the area and property owners weren’t left to deal with mutilated trees.
Why Davey decided to cut all but one limb off of one of my trees and take something like 40-50% of the other tree is beyond me. No matter how many times I asked “the boss” to explain why they mutilated my trees he couldn’t give me a straight answer. “12 feet,” he said. “I have to take down 12 feet of your trees this year.”
12 feet of tree?! Why do I even have trees if you’re going to take 12 feet of them away? I protested. I demanded an explanation. I asked them to get off my property until we could clarify the situation. All to no avail.
Who gave you the right to take that much of my trees? Since when am I not allowed to refuse service on my property? Since when are unwanted trespassers given immunity to stay on my property all that they want?
As is probably obvious, I’m a bit upset right now. I’m going to have to take at least one of my beautiful trees down. I’m not sure what’s going to happen with the other. We bought this property, at least partially, because of those beautiful trees. I’m sick to my stomach over what has happened to them. I’m disgusted, absolutely disgusted, that two companies (Duquense Light and Davey Tree Service) would act like they’re above my rights as a property owner to demand an explanation and that they cease and desist.
How has it come to this?