When it comes to a tree cutting, timing is everything. Precautions are taken; plans made. Ropes are fixed, safety clothes worn — and still there’s the shouted warning “Tim-ber!” when the cut is made.

In the case of the Cherry Capital Airport tree cutting, several people have pointed out our silence before the trees fell on this last clearing.

They’re right.

The Record-Eagle — along with city and county administrators — got a full maps-and-timeline-presentation on the tree cutting plans in December 2018. We didn’t do a story at that time, but we’d like to recognize the airport board’s proactive move in getting the information out there.

We bet you don’t want to hear excuses, and we really don’t have any good ones anyway other then the challenge we all face of too much to do and not enough time to do it, that plans change quickly in our business.

We do believe this issue is important. We have covered lots of airport tree-cutting stories (three on the airport runway project last year, several on the city tree ordinance input sessions in December 2018, and at least four stories so far this spring), but still, timing is everything.

The cutting is done and we are faced now with the changed view of our community where trees used to be.

Now, the city and county are fielding calls about these changed views.

County commissioners last week asked for the airport board’s details so they could forward some of these concerns on, and city council members have said the same — and are continuing efforts on a tree-cutting ordinance.

We want to apologize to our readers for not providing more coverage in the short-term lead-up to the most recent airport tree cuttings.

This issue will take some sorting by our elected officials and our community. Trees have tremendous value and add to the quality of our life in our community. We also know that sometimes trees need to be removed.

Finding that balance between preserving this wonderful community asset, limiting government intrusion on property rights and putting clear information forward about what restrictions and rules are in play means proactive talk from every direction, including ours.

We, with others, were given information and details on the cuttings. We didn’t get it done on this latest move like our past extensive coverage on previous cuttings.

We regret this, as we do believe this is an important community issue and deserves the kind of the reporting that shows when a tree falls, we do hear it.

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