Potentially dangerous trees in Torpy Park are scheduled to be removed this week.
Minocqua Public Works Director Butch Welch said the town crew will remove five trees in the park during the week of August 11. Experts have determined that the trees are in a state of decline and pose a risk to public safety.
Welch said he had considered contracting the entire tree removal process to a private firm, but he determined town workers could manage parts of the job.
“We’ve got the equipment, we’ve got the manpower,” Welch said. “We’re actually going to take (the trees) down ourselves.”
A contractor will remove stumps using an excavator, and also prune dead wood from standing trees with a boom truck.
The town board earlier this summer approved removal of the five trees after some citizens raised concerns about a plan to cut down about 11 trees in the park to make room for a shelter. The board ultimately revised that plan so just one tree would have to be removed, but electors voted the proposal down in June; state law requires towns to obtain consent from electors to erect structures.
Debate over the shelter prompted officials to scrutinize the health of the trees.
In May, a lawyer for the town’s insurance company advised that any hazardous trees in the park should be removed immediately because of liability concerns.
Jonathan Anderson may be reached at email@example.com.