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    Posted August 27, 2014 by
    Silver Spring, Maryland

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    "Real Men Use Chainsaws"

    When Leisure World of Maryland management reneged on removing a rotting tree presenting a danger to people and property, several senior citizen residents took care of the problem themselves.

    The 8500+ Leisure World of Maryland senior citizen residents pay a VERY HIGH monthly fee which includes their portion of approximately $2 Million annually paid to the Leisure World landscape contractor, McFall & Berry. In a recent public meeting Mike Angles, McFall & Berry President of Leisure World Operations said, "If we fail to identify a dying tree and the mutual identifies it , we remove the tree and don't charge for it". Yet, when the $325 tree removal proposal was presented by LW Grounds Manager Richard Jones, the Landscape Committee (same committee that originally approved the high priced contract language) agreed to pay the additional $325 to remove the tree.

    Leisure World Landscape Advisory Committee Action: July 10, 2014
    Approved: Proposal #14256 $325:
    Take down and remove locust tree on creek bank in rear of bldg. Flush cut stump. (3244 Sherwood Ct. Bldg. 103)

    Jones subsequently backed out simply writing to the potentially affected condo owner Laura Hawley-Jarvis, that if she wanted to pay for it, she was "more than welcome to take the tree down" and that the Mutual President Jean Gray, "refused to pay for removal." Laura then wrote to the
    Leisure World Board of Directors Chairman Barbara Cronin asking, "who owns this tree?". Cronin's reply was: "this is above my paid grade," passing the buck to the Leisure World Vice President/Assistant General Manager for Facilities and Services Jolene King, who replied
    "The willow tree in question appears to be on stream bank on Mutual 8 property. --. Therefore, the tree is the responsibility of Mutual 8. The Grounds Department mistakenly thought that the tree was on Trust maintained property I understand that the Mutual 8 Board is not prepared to take any action at this time regarding the willow tree; however, they are amenable to its removal at your expense if you so choose."

    Shouldn't all involved known, as identified by the contractor himself, that it was the contractors responsibility to remove the tree at no additional cost?

    Yet another shining example of less than ept leadership was easily and quickly addressed one afternoon last week. Evidently it "takes a village" to do what highly paid employees and failed leadership failed to do --and the neighbors cheered as the man who took down the tree said, "real men use chainsaws."

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