[fosc] financial liability

Kathy Kramer kathy at kathykramerconsulting.net
Sat Jan 7 12:27:33 PST 2006

Hi Ralph,

I saw your post re the manzanita.

I can't find the book I am looking for right now, but have you seen 
that book by, I think Andy Wakowski, on why people should garden with 
natives?  It's very readable, and compelling. He is funny, not at all 
preachy.  In it he describes how city and county public works 
agencies have made homeowners and their contractors financially 
liable if a tree, say, is damaged, during construction.

I'm sorry this is so vague - I have scoured my book-case - does any 
one else have this book?


Message: 1
Date: Thu, 5 Jan 2006 16:43:29 -0800
From: "Ralph Kanz" <rkanz at earthlink.net>
Subject: [fosc] Case File No.:DV03-185/Pallid Manzanita
To: mbrenyah at oaklandnet.com
Cc: Randy Hayes <rhayes at oaklandnet.com>, Laura Baker
	<lbake66 at aol.com>,	Brad Olson <bolson at ebparks.org>, 
Charli Danielsen
	<charlid at pacbell.net>,	Richard Cowan <RCowan at oaklandnet.com>, Jean
	Quan <jquan at oaklandnet.com>,	FOSC List
	<fosc-sausalcreek.org at lists.sausalcreek.org>,	Claudia Cappio
	<CCappio at oaklandnet.com>, Dianne Lake <diannelake at yahoo.com>
Message-ID: <380-2200615604329160 at earthlink.net>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"


Today I noted the grading taking place at 7728 Skyline.  Located on 
the site is an endangered Pallid manzanita.  This afternoon I 
inspected the file and found you had issued the project a Categorical 
Exemption from the CEQA process.  As you know a project cannot be 
exempted from CEQA when a special status species might be impacted. 
My inspection of the pallid manzanita on the site found it has been 
directly impacted by the grading activities, including removal of 
some vegetation.

In the file is a letter from a neighbor, dated June 12, 2003 advising 
you that "there is an 'Alameda manzanita' bush on the property.  I 
believe that it is located uphill from where the building is 
situated, but provisions should be made to protect it during the 
building process."  You faxed this letter to the architect for the 
project.  You also faxed the architect a list of "biologists with 
expertise in whipsnakes but may also have some knowledge on the 
Alameda manzanita plants." (Pallid manzanita was formerly referred to 
as Alameda manzanita.)  There are no further documents in the file 
referencing Pallid manzanita.

Clearly the City was aware of the presence of an endangered species 
on the site and yet did nothing to provide for its protection during 
the construction of this project.  No biological surveys were done to 
determine how many plants were present on the site.  No mitigation 
measures have been put in place to insure the continued existence of 
the species on this site.

Pallid manzanitas are in serious decline in the City of Oakland. 
Mitigation measures for previous projects have failed to be 
implemented, resulting in the loss of plants.  Fuel reduction 
activities for wildfire prevention have taken Pallid manzanita.  We 
cannot afford further losses of this species.

Please let me know how you plan to protect the endangered species 
present on this site.

Ralph Kanz

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