Update on PG&E Concord Tree Cutting from Councilmember Edi Birsan

4/9/14 — THIS JUST IN. The City Council passed a resolution Tuesday April 8th calling upon PG&E to halt all cutting on private and public property and to work with the City. PG&E has emailed its agreement to HALT ALL TREE CUTTING.

PG&E CONCORD TREE CUTTING

From: Edi Birsan (As neighbor) Note: While I am a member of the City Council, these are my personal observations and not an official policy statement from the Council which can only be done b

Edi-Birsany Resolution of the Council.

1. PG&E is ‘pausing’ its Concord Tree Cutting project on the City Owned lands.

2. They are NOT pausing their efforts to go after private home owners, though they have agreed to not cut PROTECTED trees.

If you do not know what a protected tree is  Section 13 of code chapter 122:
http://www.cityofconcord.org/pdf/citygov/code/Chapter122.pdf Basically a tree with a 12″ diameter measured at the 5 foot 6″ height from the ground.

3.  As of April 1st PG&E claims to have agreements in place with 141 of 151 property owners that were contacted, but indications are that there may be more contacts in process.

These agreements were reached before the general outcry and the interaction with the city’s own prohibition against cutting down Historic, Heritage and Protected tree classes.  Also, the agreements were reached before the full scope of alternative methodology, mitigation, proper compensation and community impacts were disclosed putting the homeowners at a great disadvantage in the discussions.

4. Their spokesman has said that they will halt the cutting on any property where the home-owner wants to reconsider the deal made. I urge you to do so. Contact at PGE is:  Tom Guarino <[email protected]> give him your name/address/and phone contact with a request to please halt all tree cutting on your property.

They are counting on your neighbors not moving as fast as they can to cut trees down. You do NOT have to agree or let them onto your property to cut down trees.

5. Indications are that PG&E is still trying to pursue additional agreements and push clear cutting as fast as they can. They appear to not be taking into account the difference of trees, root patterns or even if there is a problem though while their Headquarters have agreed to not cut Protected Trees their sub contractor may not be aware of that restriction so be vigilant. There is also mis-information that the home-owner cannot stop them, which is false. Just say NO.

6. Actions in place and on going re Concord Tree Cutting:

a. A group of  cities in Contra-Costa and Alameda has been formed and retained legal counsel

b. Concord’s City Manager is heading up a City Manager group dealing with this.

c. The Concord City Council is issuing an official resolution opposing the action:

http://www.ci.concord.ca.us/pdf/citygov/agendas/council/2014/0408/3D.pdf

This will be presented to the Council and voted on Tuesday April 8th at City Council Chambers starting at 6:30

d. Numerous organizations outside of government are stepping up their direct pressure on PG&E to halt all actions and work through

     local regulations and with the communities on a tree by tree basis.e. The City of Concord has initiated its own in house Arborist to review the status of the trees one by one (which is being charged to PG&E)f. Contacts have been made with elected officials on a state wide level and below to bring PG&E into compliance with local laws and sensibilities

7. What you can do re Concord Tree Cutting:

a. Write to your City Council to support the action to halt indiscriminate cutting of our trees [email protected]

b. Write letters to the local papers and social media to denounce these actions

c. Write to the State officials to direct them to support the cities in their position.

d. You can contact your local organizations (Neighborhood Partnerships, HOA’s, Church’s  to add to the public effort.

Remember one last thing.  PG&E is not the only pipeline in the City, and if they get away with this, who will be next?

Edi Birsan
950 Alla Ave,
Concord, CA 94518
925 798-3537 (home before 9PM please)

Note: While I am a member of the City Council, these are my personal observations and not an official policy statement from the Council which can only be done by Resolution of the Council.

Edi

Please take the short survey at
www.PulseOfConcord.com

~ Photo- Lee Suzuki, SFGATE.

Print Friendly

Comments

  1. says

    VICTORY: The City Council passed a resolution Tuesday April 8th calling upon PG&E to halt all cutting on private and public property and to work with the City.
    Today, they have emailed their agreement to HALT ALL TREE CUTTING.

    (Insert clip of Snoopy doing the Happy Dance).