Archive for the ‘PG&E’ Category

PG&E will PAY to have OCF plant a tree in your front yard

Replacement trees will be planted before the end of the year to replace all those removed from Almaden Expressway as part of the PG&E Gas Line Safety Program. Your Martin-Fontana Parks Association has negotiated for allocating 55 trees to the two parks and a few to replace dead street trees on adjacent streets.

All new trees will be selected and planted by Our City Forest, a non-profit dedicated to planting trees through out the City.

If you have room for a new tree, please send an email to SaveOurParkTrees@gmail.com to be considered. We have a limited number of trees for this program so please respond soon and get put on the list. Since the number of trees is limited there is no guarantee that every request will be fulfilled. We will submit a list to OCF soon – Do you want a free tree?

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Notes from Martin-Fontana Parks Association President, Rod Carpenter

These last few months have been a very busy time for your Parks Board of Directors.  We have been holding meetings with the City Park’s personnel seeking a letter of understanding as to what our relationship is in keeping our parks the way we would all like to see them.  It is our hope we can share a positive outcome with all of you by the time our next newsletter comes out.

The Board of Directors has purchased a Gopher X machine to help eliminate the infestation of gophers within our parks.  This will supplement the efforts of the Parks Recreation and Neighborhood Services Dept. in the months to come. It is our goal to eliminate the many holes that riddle our grassy areas and make it impossible to walk on.  Training will be given by the City’s PRNS Department and if you would like to be trained and want to volunteer your time in this effort, please let us know.

 

Robert Braunstein, a member of our Board of Directors, has produced a 30 second video spot which features the efforts of the Martin-Fontana Parks Association.  If you haven’t already seen it, just click on the video below and let us know what you think of it.

 

Thank you to our member negotiating team dealing with PG&E, led by Dick Stevens and Richard Zahner, in bringing to a conclusion another successful outcome in saving and preserving the life of the trees in our parks.  Also a thank you to PG&E for hearing our concerns and eliminating only those trees that were of necessity.

I am pleased to announce that our Board of Directors will be honoring its many volunteers on Saturday, September 16th.  Invitations will be mailed in August.  Volunteers are the life-blood of our organization and we look forward to saying “thank you” to these very special people.

Rod Carpenter

 

One dying Oak tree removed & others trimmed

Here are photos of the dying Blue Oak near the dog park being removed and others being trimmed (see previous posting)

The Blue Oak was likely impacted by the drought and had succumbed to a bark beetle infestation.

Martin-Fontana Parks Association’s Negotiating Team Saves Our Trees – Again!

Your Martin-Fontana Parks Association has completed the annual negotiations with PG&E to protect our trees. We have successfully protected a large shade tree PG&E had planned to remove.

Tree #11 at the corner of Golden Oak Way and Knoll Park Ct. in Jeffrey Fontana Park

Dick Stevens, Greg Caillet, Mike Kalashian, Vince Piazzisi, Sunny Wagstaff and Rich Zahner comprised the MFPA Negotiating Team (NT) that negotiated the 2017 vegetation management plan with PG&E. Scott Carlton of PG&E met with the NT to present PG&E’s 2017 tree removal and trimming plan in late May.

The PG&E plan was not dramatic in scope. The plan was to clear small vegetation around the transmission towers, removal of small volunteers that would eventually interfere with the power lines, trim Tree #13 (photo below)

Tree 13 at Golden Oak Way & Castello Dr. in Jeffrey Fontana Park

and removal of a healthy tree (Tree #11) under the lines in Jeffery Fontana Park at the corner of Golden Oak Way and Knoll Park Ct. Scott walked the park with us as we inspected each area, tree and bush that he recommended be trimmed or removed. He provided some data on wire and tree heights to support his recommendations.

The Team reviewed his plan and did some measurements and reviewed history of each tree to verify the accuracy of the PG&E plan. Vince repeated the wire and tree height measurements to verify the clearances claimed by PG&E and Sunny provided pictures of Tree #13 and #11 from previous negotiation sessions. Our conclusions were that the clearing of small brush and volunteers is appropriate, the trimming of Tree #13 is needed, but the removal of Tree #11 was not justified.

The dead Blue Oak tree just to the west of the Dog Park

In addition Mike suggested we add to the PG&E work plan the removal of an apparently dead large Blue Oak tree just to the west of the Dog Park and adjacent to the walking path. MFPA had an arborist from Bartlett Tree Experts inspect the tree and he confirmed that it will not survive and will become a hazard.

On June 6th Dick Stevens submitted a counter proposal to PG&E agreeing to the four actions on removal of volunteers and trimming of Tree #13 but requesting trimming of Tree #11 instead of removal. He also included the request that PG&E remove the Blue Oak.  On June 20th Scott accepted our plan as presented and notified us that PG&E’s contractor will do the work around July 10th. All the work will be paid for by PG&E.

Our next step is to have the members of the NT witness the work and confirm it is done in accordance with the approved plan as submitted by MFPA.

The Board of Directors thanks Dick Stevens for taking the initiative on this year negotiations and the association members who contributed to the effort.

Thanks to them, they achieved our mission of protecting trees in

TJ Martin & Jeffrey Fontana Parks.

February 2017 Newsletter

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Just click on the photo to download the Newsletter or click here

PG&E Gas Pipeline Safety & Our Trees

Martin-Fontana Park Association Board Members Linda Wilson, Rod Carpenter and Rich Zahner met with Don Hall and two other PG&E representatives recently to discuss two issues.

The MFPA agenda was our request that PG&E fund the proposed Sustainable Parks Initiative (SPI). We requested $20,000 from PG&E in 2017 to be matched by MFPA to plant trees and bushes, complement the PRNS Staff, and improve the appearance and utility of the Parks.

The PG&E agenda was to explain the Gas Transmission Pipeline safety program being conducted by PG&E. See the PG&E memo below for details. In summary they will remove about 150 trees along Almaden Expressway located over the gas pipeline that supplies all of the valley. The trees are on both City and County property (no private property as far we know) between McAbee Road and Rajkovich Way. PG&E is committed to replacing the trees. The question is where and they suggested planting a number of trees in both TJ Martin Park and Jeffrey Fontana Park. We did not object to the idea and talked generally about numbers, types and location.

PG&E held an Information Table at the Fontana Dog Park entrance on Saturday the 11th of February from 8AM to 11AM. The work to remove trees is likely to begin in late spring. We might get them to spread the wood chips as mulch for the Parks bare spaces.

PG&E’s memo on the program:

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Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) is working with the City of San Jose and Santa Clara County to help ensure safety crews have immediate access to natural gas transmission pipelines in case of an emergency or for important maintenance work. This gas safety work involves removing and replacing trees and structures that are located too close to the gas pipeline and could delay access for first responders or damage the pipeline. Work is expected to begin this spring on Almaden Expressway between McAbee Road and Rajkovich Way. Please note there is no work taking place at TJ Martin Park or Jeffrey Fontana Park. PG&E understands how important trees are to the local community, and will work closely with residents in close proximity to the work to offer replacement trees to be planted at a safe distance from the pipeline.

For more information about the planned safety work, please contact PG&E customer outreach specialist Emily Sloan at 1-650-737-2001 or emily.sloan@pge.com. You can also learn more about all of PG&E’s ongoing gas safety efforts at pge.com/GasSafety.

Emily Sloan      Customer Outreach Specialist, Senior

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Office: (650) 598-7278

Cell: (650) 737-2001

Email: emily.sloan@pge.com

Learn more about PG&E’s gas safety efforts at pge.com/GasSafety

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What was PG&E doing at the corner of McAbee & Golden Oak Way?

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According to our reporter in the field, Project Manager Pat Pizzo, PG&E came out on Dec 28th.  in response to a report of gas leaks in the area. After investigating, they decided to check the main gas pipe line that feeds the area on the NE Corner of Golden Oaks Way and McAbee Road. This area was where Andrew Oberhelman completed his Eagle Scout Project on Nov 10th, 2012.
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In the process of looking for the leak, the native plants growing in an approximate 25 foot square area near the corner were wiped-out.
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PG&E said that they will hire a contract landscaper to re-plant the area. However, because CA native plants are involved and commercial landscapers are not always knowledgeable about CA native plants and their needs, this may be problematic.  So far there is no estimated date for completion of the landscape replanting.

Please note:  PG&E did come back and replace the plants that were torn out.