Apparently “Chainsaw Jack” Franks didn’t have enough lubricating oil to get his bill (House Bill 3884, email addresses of Public Utility Committee members included in linked story) to allow Commonwealth Edison and Ameren to cut any tree it wanted to destroy within 20 feet of any power line…even it it’s in your back yard.
That means residents and local officials who know how wholesale slaughter of trees along roads and in back yards have at least another week to make their opinions known.
Here is the way that the Illinois Municipal League described the hearing:
“Legislation to authorize utilities to remove vegetation planted within 20 feet of a utility pole or overhead electrical conductor received a ‘subject matter only’ hearing in the House Public Utilities Committee on Tuesday, March 6.
“The IML has concerns with the legislation and was fortunate to have an expert witness, Mike Brunk, testify against HB 3884 (Representative Franks, D-Woodstock). Mr. Brunk is the City Arborist for Urbana, Illinois.
“Mr. Brunk’s testimony informed the Committee of alternative ‘best practices’ to manage vegetation and prevent interference with power lines.
“While the bill was not called for a vote, the members of the Public Utilities Committee expressed an interest in the development of solutions to ensure the protection of public safety and the preservation of electrical service during storm scenarios.”