Woodwild v. Borough: Change of Venue Motion Filed Friday

| 138 Comments

In Inwood Hill Park , in upper Manhattan, an angry person with an axe did a George Washington on a grove of lilac trees. The police are on the lookout for the culprit and the public is up in arms over this particular "arborcide." In Metuchen, New Jersey, our own snafu concerning trees and strangers in the night (or day) at Woodwild Park sent the borough and the Assocation to take their corners in a courtroom this past Friday.

The Woodwild Park Association's attorney has filed a motion for change of venue, which will be decided by Judge Francis of Middlesex County Superior Court. An attendant at the scene said that Attorney Frizell waited patiently through many an additional court case to be heard before the borough's case was discussed on the docket. The borough is paying for the Borough attorney to prosecute the men in question.

138 Comments

Oh bulldoggee, you're a pip. You're now saying that no one should have conversations at a public place, because they are at fault for doing so. You are an eavesdropper, and it's creepy and weird to take such copious mental notes of a conversation that took place between two people, neither of which were you. Everyone that knows you should whisper when they see you anywhere, at risk that their conversations will be broadcast over the Internet.

Here's an interesting site about the perils of conducting private business in a public place.

http://everydotconnects.com/2008/10/23/todays-lesson-your-private-conversations-aint-so-private/

Bulldoggee "disses" everyone in her path. She has to be able to be criticized in return. Her propagandish tactics will always be challenged.

Some people can't stick to talking about the issues - they have to make it personal.

Hey, people, if you need to get personal, go to Facebook. This is a community site, open for discussions, not dissings.

Metuchen1001, get a new obsession.

You can believe whatever you want, but that doesn't make it true.

I don't believe you, unless she now is mentoring other propagandists to post the same things.

You are not talking to bulldoggee, who has been busy this afternoon.

I love that logic bulldoggee. Because we are facing bigger issues, let's let the "smaller" things, like people intentionally breaking our laws, slide. I wonder if you'd be calling the police if someone cut one of your own trees down though. Again, try a new line of work, this one -- propagandist -- is not for you.

I love that logic bulldoggee. Because we are facing bigger issues, let's let the "smaller" things, like people intentionally breaking our laws, slide. I wonder if you'd be calling the police if someone cut one of your own trees down though. Again, try a new line of work, this one -- propagandist -- is not for you.

Hit the nail on the head. Let the little things run interference for the bigger issues and mistakes. This Borough is something, what about the 600 K mistake. How long will we pay for that?

I do have to laugh. 2 trees get wacked and there is an uproar.

The power company brings in a company from Ohio and they turn many trees into toothpicks.

You folks really need to get some perspective. You argue over things that really don't matter all that much and ignore things like a $600K accounting mistake, problems with our fire truck purchases, problems with our paying for our purchases.

I guess that is how politics works, fight over the small stuff so people don't look at the real problems, the real things that are happening.

I didn't post that last comment, but when bulldoggee rests with the propaganda, I will rest.

give it a rest will you.

Bulldoggee is just a liar, she never "overheard" any conversation, she is just full of it (as usual)


You're wrong, but that's not strange at all, because you are most often wrong.

A conversation isn't private if you are having it in a public place. Perhaps that is what people should keep in mind when they are talking loudly in public with other people close by, in plain sight.

bulldoggee, you really are something. If you think that you cannot eavesdrop on someone, just because they are in public, you are crazier than I thought. If the conversation was "private" and you were listening in without their knowledge, you were eavesdropping, and it is creepy as hell that you don't even think it's wrong. People should keep this in mind if anyone knows who bulldoggee is in real life.

by definition, you cannot eavesdrop on a conversation in a public place.

ok bulldoggee.

Eavesdropping on a conversation that you are not a part of is creepy, no matter how you put it.

well, 12;10, apparently you don't know which posts are bulldogge's. You appear to be attributing any comment defending the WPA to her.

Also, a conversation in a public place that is loud enough for others who are in plain sight to hear is not a "private" conversation. That's why the employee handbook of most big companies tells employees not to discuss company business in public places.

11:41, bulldoggee knows which are her posts.

As for the eavesdropping comment, to tune in to two other people's conversation so intently that you can quote each one of their comments verbatim, is creepy. And, who do you think you are to publish this private conversation on line? I'm sure you're bulldoggee, and are just making up fake conversations just to bash the STC.

regarding the eavesdropping comment, if people are sitting next to you in a public place and talking loud enough for you to hear, yet too loudly for you to tune them out, what course of action do you recommend?

10:37, Not sure what comment(s) you are attributing to bulldoggee?

The facts wii eventually come out. I just hope when this is resolved,there will be another letter posted on the borough website so all these rumors and gossipy posts stop.

Bulldoggee, your misrepresentations never cease to amaze me. It's on video at the pertinent Council meeting, when one of the two gentlemen stated that they (the WPA) went to the STC for "approval" of their Plan. Lying in order to persuade the general public which may not know the facts, is shameful. We all know that the WPA did not believe it was their land, or their tree. They would never have asked for a sight-line study from the Police if that was the case. They would've just cut the trees down regardless of whether the Police thought they were dangerous.

Bulldoggee, go into a different line of work. You are only further damaging your "friends'" credibility.

They've already planted a tree and have donated to the garden club MORE than is necessary for another one. "Intentionally breaks the law" is the key phrase. Everyone assumes and/or asserts that they intentionally broke the law. I will say again, if you cut a tree that you think is on your property how on earth can it be "intentionally breaking the law"? The rebuttal will be, "why did they ask the town" and the response is THEY did not. The Garden Club asked. When the town told the garden club NO, the WPA showed up at the next meeting to say, "it's our land and we approve of the garden club's work" They weren't there for permission, they were there to tell the STC that it was OK. Only the STC didn't want to hear anything of it. The "President" of the STC thinks they own every tree in town and got his knickers in a twist over this. This is all about ego.

Fine them up the whazzooo, as much as the town can get. How arrogant are these folks?

I just want to see the same type of trees back in the same spots.

So, let me get this straight. If anyone intentionally breaks the law, your solution is to simply move on, without penalties being imposed?

Sorry, normal, non-rabid, partisan Republicans do not agree with you.

Replace the trees, same size, same type.

Move on.


Let the garden club do it's thing! Set up for donations at some local stores. It could be really pretty, it;s a great space.

Rabid Republicans and Delusional Democrats make the world go round. One side makes up stories about Christmas trees, the other talks of power hungry bureaucrats. What you all fail to recognize is that WE the taxpaying citizens think you are all FOOLS! Use common sense for a change! Replace the trees with more trees and stop wasting our money on a lawsuit!!!

The only people who think this has anything to do with Republicans vs. Democrats are the rabid Republicans who are blindly defending their friends. This is about the LAW.

As for 7/4/09 at 9:50 a.m.'s post, your eavesdropping on two other people's conversation at the pool with such detail is creepy.

The WPA is contesting the fine, just like people who go to court to fight a speeding ticket.

The WPA is made up of mostly Repubs? Says who? Aren't the Florios both on the WPA? Doesn't a former Democratic Governor and First Lady count? This is simply arrogance on the part of the Borough Attorney and a lack of leadership on the part of our Mayor.

A friend had a similar problem and wrote a certified letter to the borough administrator. The tree commission chair came out and looked at the tree and agreed it was dangerous, and put the tree on "the list." Before the town got around to removing the tree, a branch fell on friend's father's van. Because the town was on notice and the tree was on "the list," the town paid friend's father's insurance deductible - he still had to submit the claim through his own insurance. However, this was under a previous tree commission chair, not the current one.

a bundle of money. This is republicans vs democrats. The wpa is mostly comprised of R's.


SO how come private citizen's get fined but we are taking the WPA to court? How much is this costing us?

Why not ask the borough attorney - after 20 hours of research he'll find the answer.

And if a branch falls and hits the house-who pays for the damage?

Heard two guys at the pool complaining about the tree commission. They have half dead trees in front of their houses and are concerned about the branches that keep falling off every time the wind blows but the tree commission won't remove them. They even offered to pay to have them taken down and pay for a new tree to be put in and the tree commissioner would not approve it.

One guy said he got a nasty letter from the tree commission saying he'd be fined $1000 if he touched the tree. Other guy said he was told the same thing in person and said "Who should I make the check out to?" He said he was willing to pay the thousand dollars just to get rid of the half dead tree.

So, here's a question. Why is the tree commission refusing offers from residents to remove and replace dangerous trees at no cost to taxpayers?

THe truth is nobody cares. Of course people could sit down and work it out, but then the lawyers don't get paid. They could spend thousands of dollars on this and yet complain of the cost of leaf bags. It is a joke. Nobody cares. 100 people can comment on the new pub coming and only a few residents care about the way they spend our tax money. We keep voting in the school budget like we won a prize, they take our money and laugh. What do we win, a couple of blue spruces? Nobody cares, until we go under.

As a frequent visitor to this site and Metuchen itself, I could only hope to have such a dedicated forum in my town to issues that concern the community. Shade tree commissions often wield control out of their jurisdiction but I couldn't imagine that this couldn't have been resolved out of court. If I was a Metuchen resident, it would matter to me if the Borough was spending money on this foolhardy tactic.

If the shoe fits....

And what a nice and thoughtful thing for you to say. Thank you so much.

More like, we are disgusted by you

Just a nasty old lady

Well, to be sure, we laugh about you bulldoggee.

Wow, you spend your time talking about me. How flattering.

1:28-it would be cheaper for the mayor and council to buy the whole town a beer at the new pub for what we are paying for this court case with out tax dollars.

Bulldoggee, I am not going to get into an exchange with you. It is enough to say that most people that I have talked with about you and this issue know that you cannot be trusted to give a truthful recitation of the facts, and certainly not the law.
The Judge will decide who was right, and when he/she does, I'm sure you will then be accusing him/her of bias. I'll just sit back and watch it play out.

well, 7:44, the beauty of the public record is you don't have to take anything at face value. You can look it up yourself. It's called fact checking. You too can get the letter from the tree commission to the garden club and the November 2007 tree commission minutes from the borough clerk. The Metuchen Environmental Resources Inventory is available at the public library. Nothing twisted, just simple facts.

11:05 a.m. is clearly from bulldoggee, in prime form in ignoring facts and the law, and twisting everything so that her friends are in the clear. People in Metuchen have wised up to her tactics, and do not take anything she says at face value.

Let's wait to see what the Judge decides. Although, as we all know, if the Judge decides against bulldoggee's friends, you'll see some accusations of bribery and political payback against the Judge. Just watch and see.

It would have been cheaper to buy two trees at Boro Hardware.

Actually they never told the WPA no, the "President" of the Shade Tree Commission (hmm, there is no such position) wrote a letter to the Garden Club. They never wrote to the WPA. In fact, the Garden Club started the whole thing when the Garden Club went to the Shade Tree Commission without the WPA's knowledge in November of 2007 with a Garden Club plan for renovating the triangle. It's all in the November 2007 minutes of the Shade Tree Commission. Funny how that meeting isn't available on the internet, but you can get the minutes (and the letter) from the Borough Clerk. Then in Spring 2008, the WPA went with the Garden Club to the Shade Tree Commission to clear up the matter. But instead of stepping back and having these two volunteer organizations proceed with their plans, the "President" of the Shade Tree Commission decided it was his plan or no plan, and decided to contest ownership of a tiny triangle of property that has been presumed owned by the WPA since 1900. A publicly available document published by the Borough in 1976 says the triangle is owned by the WPA.

Those are facts that are verifiable in the public record. The nonsense about the trees being used for Christmas trees is nothing but hearsay. Good luck tracking down the tree service employee with the Maryland driver's license to back it up.

You people have NO IDEA what you are talking about. NONE. You convict your neighbors of crimes in the court of public opinion without facts. You listen to anonymous others coming up with stories and the good ol' Metuchen rumor mill and think it is fact. "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone" Hypocrites every last one of you.

Exactly, it was the boroughs choice and they decided to keep themand told the WPA no.

WPA decided on their own to cut down the boroughs trees.

Shame on them.

It was the boroughs choice to keep them and noone knows why.

Not your choice or the WPAs choice to cut them down.

Sorry

Any other laws you have decided you don't want to follow? Maybe I can come cut down some trees on your property that I don't like?

Any that would make a nice Christmas tree for me?

Not all the trees-just those two. It is done now, let's move on and plant something nice for all to enjoy.

Lets cut down all the trees in town, much too high and breaking up sidewalks.

I agree with the poster above

"There are reasons to remove the trees and none to keep them."

No reason to keep trees, just wastin good firewood. Lets start up the chainsaws!!

Blue spruce trees can grow upward of 50-75 feet, way too high for that location. Not only would they not look right, they could break up the sidewalk that would need to be repaired and tangle up electrical lines. So public safety becomes an issue, traffic hazards, some one falls while walking on the sidewalk, electric lines altered. Plus the larger the tree the more it costs the taxpayers to remove them There are reasons to remove the trees and none to keep them. The township should have just approved the free tree removal in the first place. I think we should plant a red bud or decorative tree there that may actually provide shade. This silliness in the courts will prove that there are too many people in government and force mergers. How many people do you need to turn down free landscaping? I guess we will let the court decide and the taxpayers too.

I think I'll wait to see what the court decides.

great look with the google street view. google will rule the world soon. This ordeal is such an embarrassment brought upon themselves by the offenders as they foolishly disregarded every town official and police officer. The best part of the entire fiasco is the smoking gun with the trees in their own backyard. WHOOPS! Chalk up 2 more tree sales at Boro Hardware! You couldn't make this up right?

go on google street view and take a look

never a problem at that corner, thoug there just was an accident there without the trees

Bring them back

I agree, I could not see and would creep onto to route 27-dangerous. Why did the borough say no the tree removal in the first place?

I totally disagree. When I was stopped at that stop sign to turn left I could not see up Rt 27 past the trees and had to pull into the shoulder area to wait for an opening to turn left. If a car was also stopped on Rt 27 going south waiting to turn left onto Rector, the cars going south had to go around them. I was almost hit by one of those cars. I am glad the trees are gone.

All of this chatter about the trees being a traffic hazzard are SO ridiculous. I exit Oak Avenue onto Route 27 at least twice a day and it is obvious that once you are stopped at the stop sign that the trees (now stumps) are BEHIND you. With the trees down now I see alot of drivers ignore the stop sign as they try to time their entrance onto route 27 for their right or left turn. The absence of the trees actually promotes unsafe driving. I agree that if you were a car positioned BEHIND the driver at the stop sign then the trees did interfere with your sightline. This was a GOOD thing. With the trees in place each driver approached the stop sign and was forced to look both ways and then proceed onto Route 27. Without the trees I see too many cars go through 2 at a time onto Route 27 as they time the traffic. Not a safe practice. It is obvious that the members of the WPA took matters into their own hands and will now pay the piper. I cannot wait for the new trees to be planted!

What is the first hand info?

Any of you commenting actually at the hearing?Lots of harping but no real first hand info


Does anyone know when the trees were planted and by whom? And why did the borough say no to their removal?

NO IT IS NOT

IT IS A WASTE OF TIME AND TAXPAYER MONEY.

3:40 p.m. You just stated the entire reason why the WPA should be prosecuted: Because they substituted their own opinions for that of the Metuchen police, and took action to destroy public property when the police disagreed with them.
I happen to think that a lot of our mature trees that line many of the main thoroughfares in Metuchen are hazardous to drivers. However, I wouldn't go out and hire a service to take those trees down, because it would be against the law to do so.
The WPA disregarded the law, because they hoped that their defenders would be able to convince everyone that it'd be a waste of time to prosecute them. It's not a waste of time to enforce our ordinances against individuals and an association that intentionally defy them.

Or maybe they are so irritated with the borough that they are going to continue to take their time.

No one compalined except for the WPA, and that is why the police study. Funny, never had any problems or accidents there until after the trees were chopped.

One to solve this, WPA needs to stop using delaying tactics and present their side in court.

The town will present their side, and the court will make a decision.

Simple

The WPA tactics so far seem to indicate that they are afraid of what the court will find.

Those trees were in the wrong location and a lot of people must have complained in order for a police study to be done. It was not random trees, they were a traffic hazard. It is cheaper to buy a christmas tree then have one chopped down and delivered.

Then why have chopped down trees in your backyard? Most tree services I know of just throw the cut up trees in the grinder and be done with them. From what I have read and heard, this tree service was specifically asked to deliver the cut down trees so they could be used as christmas trees.

Ah, the spirit of Christmas!

3:26, that wasn't me. :)

With all due respect to the Metuchen police, those trees were a traffic hazard. There are a lot of elderly drivers in this town and mom's with screaming kids in the back seat. The traffic on 27 is fast and it was dangerous to creep out into it. I am not a confident driver like a police officer. I hated those trees because of their location and hope they do not put them back. This whole case is because someone does not like someone else, and the lawyers are laughing all the way to the bank. No one is going to believe that the trees were taken down for the sole purpose of a christmas tree. Does it matter where the trees went to once they were taken down?

Look, it's pointless to argue with propagandists who defend the Association by countering with facts and the law. They could care less about either of those, they have one mission: To persuade the public that they are right. And they damn the truth in the process. Just let the Court decide, and when it does decide in the Borough's favor, you will see how they will then accuse the Judge of political bias and payoff conspiracies.

Only disputed in your head, maybe your bandana is wrapped too tight?

Ownership is very much in dispute. You have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. None. Stop making up facts, you sound like George Bush.

Ownership is not in dispute, owned and maintained by the town.

WPA went for approval, was told no, went ahead anyway and got caught.

Stop lying, you are sounding like that South Carolina governor!

That's true. We're losing a lot of taxpayer money over a nothing triangle piece of land who's ownership has never been in dispute for over 100 years. It was fine for the WPA to maintain it and beautify it for a century with help from the Borough with grass cutting until one guy decided he knew better than all the rest. For a man who claims to have a love of history, he sure has a way of wanting to rewrite Metuchen's to favor his biased and partisan legal opinion.

They have been given their rights and are now using legal delaying tactics. I want to let the courts decide, everybody does, except the WPA who would rather hide.

Nobody has defamed our "neighbors", they have defamed themselves and insulted their neighbors and the town.

And nobody is gaining anything by this, we are all losing because of the actions of the WPA.

"Tree Hugger Committee" is a problem yet you call members of the Woodwild Park Association "cowards" and "arrogant jerks". Interesting perspective.

Why isn't the WPA entitled to their rights under the law? One of their witnesses is a former Middlesex County Superior Court judge and if the WPA thinks that as a result of that the case should be heard in another County, they are entitled to that relocation.

Let the courts decide what they will and stop with the attempt to defame your neighbors for the sake of your own gain.

Wow you really have a problem with court procedure.

Well if the Woodwild Park guys would stopping running from the court like cowards, we could have this done sooner rather than later.

But these arrogant jerks just keep hiding/delaying/changing venues etc.

I look forward to seeing both the blue spruces replaced, they are fine trees, never were a hazard per the Metuchen Police.

Tree Hugger Committee? How old are you? Sound like a spoiled brat whose mommy took away their favorite toy.

Complete waste of tax payer money! The WPA has already planted one tree and helped the Garden Club spruce up the flowers. I've heard there are more plans as well but rain has delayed them. This is pure arrogance on the part of the Borough Attorney. He first decided by himself, using partial evidence, who owned the property and then told the Mayor and Council they had no legal authority to act because he knew he'd find people wanting to prosecute on the Tree Hugger Committee. When the town loses in court over this the attorney should resign.

In some towns you need permission to cut down trees in your own yard.

They already planted new trees.

Wait till the defendents get their day in court? Are you kidding me?

They have had plenty of days in court and each time they delayed and now ask for move to new court.

Cowards!

Face up to the charges, make your case, live by the consequences.

They wouldn't be running like babies if they knew they were right. They know they are wrong. If they thought they owned the trees, they wouldn't have gone to the town for permission to cut them down. I cut plenty of trees and bushes down in my backyard and never went and asked for permisssion.

Then when they were turned down, they waited until middle of the winter hoping no one would notice and went ahead with what they wanted. Such arrogance.

And finally, when the police show up, the person from the tree service tells the investigator that he doesn't have the trees but was told to bring them to the Woodwild Park members houses so they could be used as Christmas Trees. Police go to the house, find the trees in the backyard.

Case closed

At $250 an hour for an attorney, is it really a good use of taxpayer dollars to pursue this?

Why not just plant new trees? It would cost FAR less than the legal fees in question.

Or here's an idea- get over it. It was two trees. Total waste of time.

Defamed? How so? For repeating what they have admitted they did? Just because you have taken the blind position that they were correct, against the weight of the law and the facts, doesn't mean that people that disagree with you are defaming your friends.

The municipal prosecutor is handling the case, and Frizell is a witness for the prosecution. The defendant is not any "men," it is a legal entity, the Woodwild Park Association. The men who are being defamed on here are members of the association, along with many other people.

4:50, yes it's just terrible to think someone is innocent until proven guilty. We are all such horrible horrible people.

OK, here is an idea. Why doesn't everyone just shut up about this until the defendants day in court?

Unless of course you don't believe in the Constitution of the US? Either that or you are just wanting to make political hay? Either way, there isn't much respect that should be offered.

Offers to make amends were made.

That pretty much sums it up. In the normal case, where someone makes a mistake and wants to resolve the situation without litigation, the person apologizes and offers to make amends. In this case, bulldoggee and her cohorts are outrageously and offensively claiming that the offenders are victims.

2007? How about 1976? All you have to do is go to the public library and look at a copy of the Borough's Natural Resources Inventory from 1976. There it is in black and white, in a document written by the borough's planning firm and paid for by Borough funds, on page A-53, "There is an old Horse Watering Trough at Oak and Middlesex Avenues. It stands on a triangle of land owned by the Woodwild Park Association." Another document the borough attorney fails to mention in his opinion letter because it doesn't support his conclusions.

The town was aware in 2007 that there was "uncertainty regarding the ownership" of the triangle. They and "their supporters" conveniently fail to mention that. All you have to do is look at the Shade Tree Commission minutes from November 2007. Oh, right, but you can't because they're not on the Boro web site.

they voted to cut down their own trees. you and others can continue to make up all kinds of stories on here but the truth will actually be heard and captured in the county courtroom. it's quite obvious you are just trying to find a favorable political angle in the court of public opinion at any cost. such shameful behavior.

They voted to chop down someone else's trees?

Then they asked the town who said no but did it anyway?

Gee, such fine citizens

3:34, the potential for change of venue had already been discussed on nj.com.

You have to be kidding if you do not believe that the people posting that Metuchen should just drop this issue and walk away are not the “supporters” of the defendants in this case. If that is not the case then I guess I should just stick my head back in the sand and also believe that they asked for a last minute change of venue, because something last minute "just came up." I mean I remember their "supporters" explaining what stand-up people the defendants are so they would never waste any more of the tax-payer money for no reason, right? Give me a break. I hate this whole story; and delay tactics like this, just keep it at the top of everyone’s list.

Ohhh, you've got it, it's a political conspiracy. Maybe former Mayor Ed is behind the prosecution! Fool.

People like you are disgusting. The Woodwild Park Association is a local gropu of many fine Metuchen citizens from BOTH political parties. It even includes the former Governor of New Jersey and his wife. Their membership voted to take the trees down. Your attempt to politicize such a thing is a sign of desperation and a sincere disconnect with the majority of Metuchenites who are intelligent enough to simply pick the best candidate regardless of party. You don't do your cause any good with such behavior.

One of the perps was former head of Metuchen GOP

So connect the dots...

who are their "supporters"? is the woodwild park association running for office? don't you mean their members?

I wished these people who cut the trees cared as much about our taxes as their supporters do. From this article this request is a smoke-screen just to drag this whole thing out. If they feel there were in the right, they should be more than willing to move the whole process forward and put this whole thing to rest.

Seriously, if they had simply apologized and offered to reimburse the Borough for its costs, it probably could have been resolved. Instead, they claim, after the fact, that they thought they owned the land, and that they were right in cutting down the trees. Their post-incident conduct requires the Borough to take action, to deter them or anyone else from doing anything like this again, and to recoup the Borough's costs incurred by reason of their destruction of property.

right. What jerks these Woodwild Parks folks are. Get told no bye the town and then go ahead and do it anyway. Then get caught with the trees in their backyards to use as christmas trees. Hope they get hit with a fat fine.

just sitting at my desk laughing and making noises like a cash register ka-ching, ka-ching,ka-ching,ka-ching.our tax $$$ at work

OK bulldoggee, please tell us all when the Borough has decided not to take action against individuals who intentionally destroyed Borough property. Thanks very much.

And because you don't know of it, of course it has never happened.

Despite bulldoggee's best efforts to propagandize this issue, I know of no circumstance where the Borough did not take some sort of action against people who have admitted intentionally destroying public property.

Clicked through to the New Yorker article and it doesn't mention lilac trees, but it does have a funny quote from a parks administrator about a "meadow partisan."

Hoppa thought that their perpetrator might have been a meadow partisan, “someone who is anti-forest.” But the latest attack—four tulip trees, a bunch of sugar maples, a red oak, a kwanzan cherry, a bitternut hickory, and hackberries—seemed random. “It’s multiple species scattered around a diverse area,” Hoppa said. She gestured toward a jagged hackberry stump. “What? Why?” she said. “We’ve since had to cut it, so that it wouldn’t be an impalement hazard.”

This is a waste of the court's time AND taxpayer money. If the motion for change of venue is granted, we'll have to pay $150 an hour for the boro atty to drive somewhere in Union or Somerset county, and then sit and wait in court. This is absurd.

11:10 must be aware of some magical court proceeding where everything the borough attorney opines is "deemed" to be true.

The town frequently exercises its discretion as to whether or not to enforce certain ordinances or levy fines. People put up decks or sheds without permits and then when they get caught are allowed to just pay for the permit. Rarely do they issue fines.

No court has determined that Woodwild does not own the land. Frizell's opinion is not definitive.

Why does the town have to pay extra for this? How many lawyers are on our council?

Is this just a way for our town council to drum up business for himself? Isn't it a conflict for our town lawyer to sit in on our council meetings, participate and offer non legal opinions and then make money off our town doing legal work?

All this so one person will be happy? I think it looks grand now,much better than before.

Funny, first they claimed they owned the land, when that was shown to be a lie, now they use all these delaying tactics.

What a bunch of cowards these two men are. Apparently they thought they could get away with it because they think they are more "important" than anyone else in town.

I will be happy when they are forced to replant the two spruces.

Let's wait and see what happens in the litigation. Speculating as to what a Judge may or may not do is unproductive.

So if the judge does not think an apology isin order and no fines are to be enforced, I guess it is the borough who will have to man up fast to face the taxpayers.

I don't see much slant in Jana's article, humor maybe, but not slant.

It would be nice if there could be adults on all sides of this issue resolving it. Too bad that didn't and isn't happening.

If the men in question simply apologized and reimbursed the Borough for its costs and expenses, I'm sure it would not have gotten this far, but you cannot blame the Borough for enforcing its ordinances.

This is a waste of the court's time.

8:43, so I guess you're comfortable with everyone in Metuchen making choices as to which trees they like and which they dislike, and then chopping down whichever ones they dislike? What makes us looks bad is that Metuchen residents have destroyed Borough property, and have no remorse whatsoever about it.

Hey 08:30,say hello to Edison and goodbye to the small enrollments in the high school. This nonsense makes us look bad. And yes,really.those trees were ugly and a traffic hazzard. I am glad someone used them at Christmas trees, at least they went to use.

Blue Spruce are ugly?

Really?

Then why where the two woodwild park guys trying to put them up in their houses for Christmas Trees?

Bunch of criminals that should fully prosecuted. Scumbags who won't even man up after being busted red handed.

OK, so someone else who is clearly biased in favor of the defendants doesn't see the slant in Ms. Siciliano's article? Shocking.

OK, so someone else who is clearly biased in favor of the defendants doesn't see the slant in Ms. Siciliano's article? Shocking.

I don't see the slant, if someone took down liliac trees in MEtuchen I would be angry too, at least they are pretty. The trees here were ugly and blocked the view of oncoming traffic. Metuchen was lucky someone wanted to clear those trees for free. Nonsense like this is going to win the state favors in forcing small town mergers with larger towns.

Ms. Siciliano, your bias in favor of the defendants is clearly showing in this article. If you want people to rely on this website for actual news, stop slanting your coverage in favor of your own views.

Isn't Fromm a landscape architect? Don't think he's an attorney.

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