Despite outcry, tree trimming will resume

By Brandi Bailey

June 14, 2013 Updated Jun 14, 2013 at 11:29 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Aggressive tree trimming in the city of Binghamton has been upsetting residents. But officials say little can be done to resolve the controversy since crews are following state and local laws.

NYSEG is in charge of the trimming, and the company recently took a break in an attempt to resolve some concerns among residents along Riverside Drive and surrounding neighborhoods.

The city's Shade Tree Commission worked with the utility on the trimming plan, and says it was the best way to get the job done.

However, the commission said they believe pruning should have been done more often to diminish the impact of such drastic change. It's been more than five years since the trees were last trimmed.

Regardless of when its done, NYSEG must follow Public Service Commission rules.

"It's an unfortunate situation, but an unavoidable situation. The power company is required to maintain access to electricity. In order to do this there has to be clearance between high tension lines and the trees," said BU associate professor of environmental studies Richard Andrus.

"This is not the first time that NYSEG or contractors have ever cut trees ever in the city of Binghamton, but this is one of the times where we've seen wide spread decimation and we need to ask ourselves why," said Republican Mayoral Candidate, Rich David.

NYSEG plans to continue trimming next week.The city says as long as NYSEG is complying with regulations to protect power lines, the city cannot intervene.