The Falls Township Board of Supervisors took steps earlier this week to initiate the removal of ash trees impacted by an invasive insect throughout the township.
Known as the Emerald Ash Borer, the beetle is infamous among landscapers and gardeners for devastating their targets. The small creatures eat the inner bark of ash trees, meaning any targeted tree is effectively dead.
Now, Jimmy’s Tree Landscape Contractors, LLC will make rounds throughout the municipality to clear the trees. Their work approval comes at the recommendation of another municipality, according to Township Manager Peter Gray.
Supervisors Chairman Bob Harvie said the goal is to replace as many trees as possible. The township has planted an estimated 700 trees in the past several years.
As the lone bidder, Falls Township awarded the contract at $1,780 per day. Several other fees are significantly less than other contractors hired in the past for similar work.
For example, the emergency hourly rate is $330 as opposed to $425 paid to a different contractor. The crane hourly rate is $225, much less than the previous $350.
The Emerald Ash Borer was discovered in Michigan in 2002, and has spread to 35 states total. It has killed dozens of millions of ash trees in the United States.