Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Have Trimming Trees On Public Property and Maintaining City Sidewalks Now Become the Responsibility of Sierra Madre Property Owners?

Here is something interesting you might want to check out. If you go to the following Planning Commission staff report (link), scroll down until you get to this page.


Then scroll down until you find this:


When you get there, look for the following language:


Did you know that? There is also the matter of sidewalk repair, which according to the following now also falls upon the concerned property owner.


According to Exhibit I - Sections A and B - certain property owners are now responsible for trimming city trees. And according to Exhibit J these same folks are also responsible for maintaining the city's sidewalks and curb areas.

In other words, according to what is cited above the city is requiring Conditional Use Permit applicants to trim city trees and repair/replace city sidewalks. This is not being applied to everyone. However, if you do not comply and repair or replace city property, you will not be issued a CUP for your project.

The residents pay city taxes for this kind of work to be done. Therefore no private property owners should be required to maintain the city's property. Especially after the residents of Sierra Madre agreed to pay higher utility taxes (Measure UUT) in order to have just these kinds of responsibilities met by the city.

The next thing you know, property owners will be required to fix water leaks, pot holes, and sewer problems. Which are some of the other things that the city seems to be having trouble keeping up with. Right?

So what is the real deal here? If you go to the following City Hall maintained site dealing with the matter of the City's responsibility for maintaining trees on public property (link), you will find this:

Parkway Tree Trimming - In an effort to consistently maintain the City of Sierra Madre's tree-lined streets the Public Works Department provides tree trimming on a rotating schedule.

Pretty much acknowledges that the City of Sierra Madre's Public Works Department handles tree trimming on public property, right? No matter whose property these trees might be near?

This next City Hall site (link) tells us that the City takes similar responsibilities for things like street and sidewalk maintenance.

The City of Sierra Madre's streets and sidewalks are maintained by the Street Maintenance Division of the Public Works Department. The Department strives to maintain the City's streets and sidewalks by providing fast and reliable service to its residents. The Street Maintenance Division continues to improve and maintain the streets through the City's ongoing street rehabilitation project.

So when exactly did the responsibility for maintaining trees and sidewalks in these instances pass from the city's Public Works Department to the city's property owners? Why would something this confiscatory be announced in a Planning Commission staff report prepared by City employees? Did the City Council recently make this change?

And why do you think that would have happened?

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42 comments:

  1. Let me guess. The city wants residents to pick up costs like these so it can use this tax money elsewhere. Perhaps for paying down that $9 million dollars in unfunded CalPERS exposure?

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    Replies
    1. All resources must be used to perpetuate the status quo, municipal employee security and wealth.

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    2. Mr Mod
      You have a great story just waiting to be relayed here, from Mrs Verlato doing something great at last nights CC meeting. David was there too. Ol Roger about bust aerota.

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    3. What did April do?

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    4. 5:12, I suggest that you write it up for the Mod and send it to him!
      Sometimes people send him videos, clips from youtube, and that would be good too.

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  2. Once again the blind in city hall are hoping to get this past the public during up coming busy holiday rush, city of Los Angels tried this side stepping of responsibility concerning trees an Sidewalks they too lost in court. You give them a raise and they want to bite the hand that feeds them, city hall should be kept on a short leash at all times, answering to the voters and not to themselves.

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    1. 7:10 This is already on the books. It may be legal, but it is so wrong to make a property owner pay to maintain city property when taxes are to take care of these issues.

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  3. Mayor Goss has stated on several occasions that getting trees trimmed and sidewalks repaired is of the first importance to him. Is this the solution? Shoving it off on the taxpayers? Wasn't Measure UUT supposed to take care of things like this?

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    1. One would think that if the city is going to require a property owner to maintain sidewalks & trees when they get a CUP, then the city should deliver sidewalks & trees to that owner in good & well-maintained condition.

      Otherwise, the CUP property owner is paying for decades of neglected tree & sidewalk maintenance.

      Is this the legacy for which Gene Goss wants to be remembered?

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    2. If you are buying a house in Sierra Madre, make it one without a sidewalk.

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    3. If you don't have a sidewalk, don't be surprised that the city makes you install one!

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    4. Goss has declared himself a staunch advocate of property rights.
      This is true even to the point that if someone wants to build a McManny next to you, too bad for you.
      So how can he approve of this violation of private rights?

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    5. Goss' imaginary friends say it is ok.

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  4. About the time the Tree Commission and the newly formed Environmental Committee were blended; i believe the change was made for the public works dept. and tree trimming and sidewalk repair. Also; not sure if the Fire Dept. does weed abaitment in the hillside, i believe that is passed onto the homeowner, not sure if the state provides the funding any longer. That i believe was addressed by the tree commission.

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    Replies
    1. The tree commission is missed. The thing that replaced it is irrelevant.

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  5. I f someone is getting a CUP they are already paying a lot of money to the city. This additional cost seems like a pretty extreme ask.

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    1. I don't think the homeowners should be responsible for city property, but what's a couple of thousand more to someone who buys a huge lot, tears down an old house, and puts up a two story 3,000 footer?

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    2. Must pay a ransom to get your CUP.

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  6. The property owner is liable for his property to the street curb including the 8 ft. city easement whether there is a sidewalk,tree,or nothing. It's a standard law that's been around for decades. Nothing new here.....

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    1. 9:10 - You are mixing your apples and oranges. Sure you need to keep your area bright and shiny is important. But repairing sidewalks or trimming away tree branches from utility lines? You must have a hidden agenda.

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    2. Sorry I missed the part about trimming around utility lines. Don't let SCE find out,as they trim every 2-3 months."Hidden agenda" yes I'm in a very deep conspiracy of some sort.Tell me more please....May I honk your red nose?

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    3. Oh. It's the insult troll. Sorry. I thought you were being honest.

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    4. You may have your communist city mixed up in reference to property owner is liable - legally the city holds all liability under California law. Mow maintain is another matter please consult a lawyer before you go off a on another problem seeking mission on this site.

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    5. 11:03 What are you trying to say? Who are you talking to? I'm confused

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  7. Some one tell me if the extra savings the city has accumulated by passing on costs, has gone into fixing leaky city pipes destroyed by the chemicals dumped through them; or are the monies going to employees retirement?

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  8. I think the word is EXTORTION.

    "Extortion is a form of theft that occurs when an offender obtains money, property, or SERVICES from another person through coercion."

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    1. Exactly. Pay to fix the sidewalk and trim the trees or no CUP for you!

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    2. There must have been a hearing and legal consultation to make something like this.

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    3. 11:02 says it's on the books, so yes, it had to go through the approval hoops. Doesn't mean it can't be changed, if the residents have the will to make that happen.

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  9. We have to face the fact that the only thing the city can afford is its own staff.

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    Replies
    1. City staff works very hard at keeping its needs fully funded.

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    2. Ungrateful, 11:19.
      Who would run the city parties if the staff were not allowed to live in the manner that have become accustomed to?

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  10. Question to have answered: is the application for the CUP changing the use of the property and the drive-way/curb cuts in order to complete this project? It has been some time now that the city begin the side-walk repair project with sharing the cost with the adjacent property owner. But there are some circumstances where the city takes full responsibility of the cost of the repain. What exactly, I forget.

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    1. The property owners only paid on a voluntary basis to get to the front of the queue. I'm not aware anyone was being forced to pay.

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  11. When will the City Council begin discussing that 2018 parcel tax increase they've had on the back burner for awhile? You, know, the one that is supposed to help pay for all of those new water pipes we need, plus sidewalks, tree trimming, etc. etc. You know, all the stuff Measure UUT was supposed to take care of.

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    1. Shhhhhhh. Don't mention the war.

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    2. UUT? What the %#}^! Those should be paid for by taxes.

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  12. Public works....that is a good joke!

    Can Bruce Inman like the last 4 councils wanted to but we're told "Bruce won't be hired by anyone else".

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    Replies
    1. Inman is not qualified for his position. He doesn't have the required training and degrees.

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  13. Why do we need the SCE. tree trimming so often? Usually i watch them parked on a side street for half the day. Then the next day SCE sets up, waits for an hour or two and cuts one small branch. Does the city check there work? Does the city pay SCE for a contract?

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  14. Our neighbor broke out the curb and sidewalk to build a workshop behind the main house, garage and laundry room then left it without driveway and sidewalk for over a year until we all complained. The city had them fix it within a month. This is not new, it has been on the books for years. Tree maintenance same thing.

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    1. That seems also quite reasonable. I would think that someone who destroys our community property should be liable to fix it.

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