Warren man wages power play with utility company

A Warren homeowner is trying to stop the power company from knocking down a group of trees that surround his Somerset County home.

The trees are in jeopardy of being torn down because they are blocking power lines. Several trees surrounding August Salvatore?s house have been knocked down before, but he feels the additional removal of trees will jeopardize his privacy and cause his property values to drop. He is spending money to have the trees moved to another area on his property.

?There was no indication they were going to cut them and even though an easement contract apparently allows them to do this, you have to understand we are homeowners, we have to keep our property as best we can," said Salvatore, who moved to the house in 1982 with his family.

A spokesperson for First Energy says that the move is not an arbitrary one.

"When it comes to the trees and power lines, we follow the standards put in place by the federal government and state board of public utilities,? said the spokesperson. ?If the property owner wants the trees replanted we are not required to cover those costs."

Salvatore is considering taking his fight with First Energy to court.

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