INDUSTRY — A Madison logging company was recently fined $35,000 for violating state laws regulating clear-cutting practices in the towns of Industry and Peru, according to a Maine Forest Service official.

The company, T.R. Dillon Logging Inc., agreed to pay the fine and prepare management plans for the hundreds of acres of affected land, which the company owns, according to Tim Post, a field team leader for the state agency that oversees forestry practices.

In Industry, the clear-cut violations happened on two parcels, with 101 acres just north of Route 148 and another 32 acres near Rand Road, Post said. Similar violations took place on 212 acres in Peru, south of Route 108 on Burgess Hill Road.

A clear-cut harvest is legal when the process follows rules set out in the state’s forest practices law, Post said. For example, every acre of clear-cut harvest is required to have an offsetting acre, known as a buffer zone, to separate it from other clear-cut harvests.

The Madison logging company was fined because it did not have a harvest plan prepared by a licensed forester for any of the parcels. Two of the parcels also did not have the on-site review required by state rules governing the size, arrangement and management of clear-cut harvests, Post said.

Post noted that the penalty is among the highest on record, saying the fine was more severe than others because of the scope and nature of the violations. The owners of the company were not available Friday to comment on the fine.

Clear cutting can be a useful tool in harvesting timber when the regulations are followed, Post said.

The first state laws regulating clear cutting were passed in 1989, and amended in 1999 to the standards that remain today, he said, adding the laws were passed after many residents complained about unchecked and widespread clear-cut harvests ruining the landscape.

The severity of each fine is different based on a number of factors, with the goal being to remove the financial gain from the violations, Post said.

There is typically an average of three to five penalties issued annually for clear-cutting violations, he said.

Despite the steady number of violations, Post described the penalties as effective deterrents.

“We don’t have many repeat offenders,” he said.

 

David Robinson – 861-9287

[email protected]

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