BEATRICE – A communities await the arrival of a pest that destroys ash trees, the City of Beatrice is continuing its efforts to eliminate the targets of the pest.
The City of Beatrice is sending notices to private property owners about ash tree removal options.


Mayor Stan Wirth said, "Notices are being sent this week to individuals along Lincoln Street to Monroe between 13th and 19th who have ash trees that are in the city right-of-way. The question to them, do you want us to remove it, or do you want to remove it? They have the option. We're not saying that we're going to come in and cut your tree down, unless you give us permission to do it".


The emerald ash borer has been detected in Omaha and Lincoln, but Beatrice and other communities have yet to see a confirmed presence of the borer, first detected in southeastern Michigan about 17 years ago.


The City of Beatrice has removed all of the ash trees from city parks, replacing them with other varieties of trees. The city's Public Properties Department has taken out a total of 187 trees.


Any ash trees on private property are the responsibility of the property owner.
"If that notice comes out that if at some point in time, the emerald ash borer is in our area, then they will be directed to remove the trees", Wirth said.
Just over a dozen ash trees not yet removed from last year, will be taken out this fall in the area from Sixth to 13th, and from Lincoln to Monroe Streets.