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09/01/15 2:00pm
JULIE LANE PHOTO William Dickerson could soon see his Tarkettle Road property cleared of overgrowth from adjacent town-owned lot.

JULIE LANE PHOTO
William Dickerson could soon see his Tarkettle Road property cleared of overgrowth from adjacent town-owned lot.

Gears are in motion, turning slowly, but turning.

That’s the word on cutting back vegetation from town-owned land that has been bothering William Dickerson for years.

Two members of the Community Preservation Fund Advisory Board are engaged in assessing the full scope of work that needs to be done to free Mr. Dickerson’s Tarkettle Road property from encroaching, overgrown and unwanted tree limbs and leaves. (more…)

08/12/13 7:56am

JULIE LANE PHOTO | Tarkettle Road resident William Dickerson won’t get help from the town in managing the adjacent Lawnsdale property he said threatens his house.

Tarkettle Road resident William Dickerson calls it a broken promise.

But no matter, there won’t be any maintenance work performed on the Lawnsdale property abutting his house anytime soon.

Mr. Dickerson continues to insist that despite what town records show, he was promised by Supervisor Jim Dougherty that there would be a stewardship plan in place for the 1.2-acre site the town and Suffolk County acquired in 2007 next door.

Mr. Dougherty has denied any such promise, pointing out that at the time, there was no provision for stewardship of lands acquired through the Community Preservation Fund. But he had promised more recently to look into the situation when Mr. Dickerson complained in July about tree growth on the property he feared could damage his pool and the walkway surrounding it.

The Community Preservation Fund now does provide some money for stewardship and plans are in place that affect four or five other acquired properties, Mr. Dougherty said, but Lawnsdale isn’t currently on the list.

Public Works Commissioner Jay Card Jr. inspected the Lawnsdale property at Mr. Dougherty’s request and concluded there were no sick or dead trees that would pose a problem. A picture he took of the property for the town’s files appears to show that Mr. Dickerson “cleared the brush about six feet over the property line if the stakes in the lawn are correct,” Mr. Card said. Mr. Dickerson denied clearing any part of the land.

“We cannot identify any trees that pose a hazard to his garage or pool at this time,” Mr. Card added.That sent the matter to Town Attorney Laury Dowd for a check of the acquisition records. Ms. Dowd responded that she saw no threat to Mr. Dickerson’s property. She also said that from the outset, the plan called for leaving the property as it is.

According to the record of the acquisition, “The balance of the property will be left in its current state, to act as open space, habitat for animals and for storm water recharge. It is currently overgrown with invasive, non-native vegetation, and this plan may be amended at some future time to deal with removal of those plants, grading and other materials which may have been dumped on the property.”

That may be the town’s record, Mr. Dickerson said, but, “that’s a terrible piece of property,” overgrown with poison ivy and insects infesting the area, he said. He further complained about one large tree looming over a boat he keeps in Dickerson Creek littering the craft with leaves and debris.

“The whole thing is a mess,” Mr. Dickerson said. He said there are about 400 feet of bulkheads abutting the property and a boat ramp that are sorely in need of repair.

“The longer they let it go, the more expensive it’s going to be to do the maintenance,” Mr. Dickerson said.