Jonathan David of MassTree- made comments at last week's special Select Board Meeting (11/10/11) stating that he has witnessed widespread price gouging by certain companies engaged in tree and debris removal services within the town of Longmeadow. In the video clip below he asks that our elected officials as well as the Police Department take an active role in protecting the residents of Longmeadow from such abuse.
Price gouging is a term referring to a situation in which a seller or service provider prices goods or services much higher than is considered reasonable or fair. In precise, legal usage, it is the name of a crime that applies in some of the United States during civil emergencies.
I've known Mr. David for quite some time and he has completed a number of tree removal related projects on my property. His expertise and that for his team is high and his prices are fair.
A similar price gouging situation took place last winter when many town residents feared for the personal safety of their families because of possible roof failures caused by the large amount of snow. There were a number of instances where companies and individuals charged exorbitant prices for their snow removal services.
In a possible response to Mr. David's call to action, our Town Manager issued the following press release earlier today which I would consider a "too little too late" passive action.
"Please be cautious when hiring tree service companies or other disaster recovery services. Make sure they are reputable firms. Contact the Better Business Bureau at 508-755-2548 or www.bbb.org or the Attorney General's office at 617-727-8400 for information."
Here is a link to the TM's full press release.
I would urge the Select Board to take some stronger action on this issue.