On April 6, the Warren Select Board approved a logging curb cut application from landowner Michael Marino, who wants logging access for a parcel of land off Airport Road just below Highland Drive.
Marino had logged this land 15 years ago and told the select board he needed to build a road so his truck could get to the top of the parcel of land. After a site visit, the board approved the curb cut for logging access only, agreeing that the town zoning administrator must be contacted if the road is put to any other use.
Land erosion and deterioration were the main concerns for the board prior to approving the curb cut. However, Warren zoning administrator Ruth Robbins assured board members that any loggers in the state of Vermont are bound to environmental preservation-oriented management practices.
“There are specific practices for logging. They apply not only during logging but after logging, and address a lot of the water drainage issues,” said Robbins. “Once it is a logging road, he has to consider the management practices set forward by the state. That includes making sure the discharge of any water is done appropriately so you don't have erosion.”
One erosion prevention tactic, for instance, is leaving stumps in the ground after trees are cut. “Will you pull out a lot of stumps?” Robbins asked Marino, who said he would not pull out stumps. “When the job is done, disturbed areas will be seeded, watered and mulched,” Marino added.
“Mike knows the forestry practices that are expected of him. I’ll take him at his word that he’ll follow those practices,” said select board chair Andrew Cunningham.
Robbins also pointed out that the road could be developed further in the future. “Let’s do a what if. Let’s say at some point in time in the future that access is no longer going to be for logging but for some other development. What exists will be analyzed to see if it meets the standards for a development road,” said Robbins. “It’s very easy for all of us to see this as a potential development road. But right now, today, the permit that I will be giving him to tack on the tree, per the approval of the select board, is for a logging road.”