Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

Real news from Florida for working families since 2007

Lake Shore Hosp Authority

Lake Shore Hosp Auth's "Chainsaw Jack" Claimed Vindication Before Clear Cutting Began

Manager Berry (in shirt) confers with a Complete Tree Service team member as the trees come down.

COLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – On Friday morning June 3, a shallow rooted maple tree around Lake DeSoto was one of a few in the county that had toppled over after earlier torrential downpours. Lake Shore Hospital Authority Manager, Jackson P. "Jack" Berry, who had previously ordered clear-cutting of 48 trees in the last remaining shaded public parking area around Lake DeSoto, used the fallen tree as vindication for his previously ordered clear-cutting. On June 5, Mr. Berry appeared in the daily print newspaper standing next to the roots of the fallen tree.

The work goes on in earnest.                                                                             ++ enlarge

During the June 13 Lake Shore Hosp Auth meeting, Mr. Berry provided pictures of the roots of the fallen tree and told the Governor's Board that he provided the pictures "mainly just to show you how some people can be so wrong about so many things."

Mr. Berry did not mention the people, or what they were wrong about.

The remaining trees were scheduled for clear-cutting in the afternoon.                    ++ enlarge

On Monday, June 20, Complete Tree Service mobilized its equipment and began the task of the Berry/Gov Scott Board ordered clear-cutting.

Loaded up and ready to go.











The trees in the little park, a known hawk breeding habitat, had been standing for over 50 years.

Manager Berry's claim that the park was a known drug dealing area proved to be bogus.

Lake City's Building Department rubber stamped the tree removal permit without first inspecting the area.

By Tuesday afternoon, June 21, about 2/3 of the trees had been felled giving a clear indication of the finalized look of the area.




It was not a pretty sight.



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More LSHA stories are here.

LSHA 8 (clockwise from top):
Koby Adams - political operative and Liz Porter's Chief of staff
Brandon Biel - latest Scott appointee and a young republican on the move
Dr. Waseem Khan - a board member who
lives out of the county
Janet Creel - real estate broker
Ron Foreman - father of the County Atny
Tim Murphy - a nice guy, talented welder, clueless about government
Board Chairwoman Lory Chancy - her main job appears to be not to answer questions and to protect Columbia County's legendary political operative, Jackson P. "Jack" Berry (in the middle).


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April photo of hawk in tree. This tree was one of the first to go.      (courtesy)