Monday, November 12, 2012

RIP: Majestic Coto de Caza Oak Tree

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Coto de Caza – Given that Coto de Caza’s CZ Master Association spends more than $1.5 million/year for landscapemaintenance, including two landscaping companies,  consultants, asophisticated irrigation system and a full time general manager, a logical conclusion is that any diseased and or dead oak tree in the community is mostly likely due to negligence, particularly when the  community went through an oak tree debacle when Lennar was cutting down  oak trees  to make room for the South Ranch.  See for example the CDC Oak  Tree Preservation Guidelines.

Months before the Oak Tree was "declared dead":  Poisoned or Neglect?

RIP -Arbor Essences "sees no signs of life" -  Summerhill Oak Tree  - Click here for details

Efforts to save Oak tree fail

So, what does it take to cut down a majestic oak tree in the Coto de Caza golf course property?  Well, first on behalf of the CZ Master Association board of directors, a Keystone Pacific representative issues a death sentence:  The oak tree is to be cut down immediately because of fire threat.  When a neighbor objects, Keystone retreats saying that if first has to figure out  who owns the tree
But wait, there is more.  Armed with an Arbor Essence report, Keystonetries to cut down the tree again.   Now, we have a copy  of a report  prepared for Keystone Pacific by Arbor Essence dated July 18, 2012.  The report states that “there are no signs of life in the tree, bark is desiccated and cracked, frass and exit holes of wood boring insects were also observed in the main stem.  Unfortunately, this tree failed and cannot be restored to health.  Due to limitation of my inspection, I am unable to determine the cause of failure”  - The assessment seems to be based strictly on a limited visual inspection, and in that case, perhaps all oak tree bark would then appear to be desiccated and cracked.  In other words, a density analysis could be more definitive.  As to the “no signs of life comment”, would new springing leaves be an indicator of life, as shown in the photograph below from the oak tree in question?

RIP:  Grand Old Oak Tree

Is the golf course view worth this?

The concluding paragraph in the report reads more like a pharmaceutical disclaimer:“ It should be noted that the study of trees is not an exact science and arboriculture does not detect pre predict with any certainty.  The arborist therefore is not responsible for tree defects or soil conditions that cannot be identified by a prudent and reasonable inspection

Arbor Essence's Kerry Norman  could not find a sign of life! - What does it look like to you?
A reasonable report from a tree expert should use heuristics complemented by the scientific method to conclude that a tree is dead.  If the inspection is insufficient to provide a diagnostics, it should then state that the result of the analysis is inconclusive. A carpenter measures twice, cuts once.  Should an arborist not inspect at least twice, before declaring a majestic oak tree dead?  Thus, based on the evidence we have so far, we conclude that the Arbor Essence report is not only flawed, but clearly aimed at supporting the removal of the oak tree in question.  We asked Arbor Essence  to comment on our observations, but never got a response.

But wait, there is more.  When the concerned neighbor gets on top of the tree to prevent the landscape crew to cut it down, Keystone goes shopping for an arborist’s second opinion - allegedly paid for by the Coto de Caza Golf Club management -   Particularly when we find out that the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) OCFA never declared the oak tree in question a fire hazard.

Finally, today we are sad to report the majestic oak tree is no longer.  The CZ Master Association has had its way.  Now, if the board of directors was as zealous about public safety as it is about destroying an oak tree with signs of life, the community would have the safest streets and lowest crime rate in the community – it does not.

From this, to......
.. this to get.....

To that end I am enclosing for your review and action a proposed Orange County Native tree preservation and removal ordinance, based on an ordinance in Walnut Creek  that I believe needs to be enacted as soon as possible. I say that because at the present time there are absolutely no laws or ordinances that protect our trees from being arbitrarily cut down and destroyed on a whim and on the contrived opinion of an unqualified unlicensed Arborist without an independent review and county permit. This is what happened in my case and if we don’t pass some laws and rules it will happen again. This is why I believe the city of Walnut Creek adopted their common sense tree ordinance. We now need to do the same.

An unobstructed  view - Pity the fools!

Kindly brought to you by:
CZ Master HOA board of directors:
Lyle Schlieder
Xochitl J. Yocham
Bob Varo
Robert Curran
Phil Mitchel

Keystone pacific
Vinnie Davis
Tracy Willaims
Carey Treff
Coto de Caza Club Corp
Mark Burnette VP club corp 
Joe Oliver club club corp
JR Rosenbluth
Coto golf & racquet club
Ken Holcomb
Tree service companies
Arnbor Essence Kerri Norman
Four Seasons Tree - Adam Heard

 Expressing his thoughts after his valiant effort to save the majestic oak tree.


Coto de Caza, CA-  Who woulda thought this grand old 200 year old giant oak tree would bring out the very worst in people running Coto de Caza and it's local golf course? Pretty sad if you ask me. Coto de Caza Resident fighting his HOA, property management company, the OCFA and the Coto de Caza golf club over the SummerHill Grand Old Oak Tree.

 I was jolted to a run by the sound of a saw out back, this morning and stood slack jawed at the scene of a 200 year old oak tree being sawed down.  My husband and I started to yell.  This is a mistake!
Please this tree is not dead.  There is no arboretum report, no nothing stating this tree needs to be cut.  Help!  I tried talking with the men who had already started the job.  I asked, “Do you have a permit”?  A mute stare was all I got in return.  

 If you do not see anything wrong, you just qualified for a seat on the CZ Master Association board of directors.

Coto de Caza, CA – On Sunday July 1, 2012 we are notified that the old Oak Trees by Summerhill have received the death sentence and that Keystone is prepared to send the death squad sometime Monday to cut down the trees with what appears to be a Pelosi-esque rationale:  Gotta cut down the oak trees to find out who owns them.”

Coto de Caza, CA – CZ Master Association dues-paying members pay a private security company some $1.8 million per year.  The question is, what do the members get in return:  Utility?  Security?  Futility?

You be the judge:

Coto de Caza, CA – It has been widely known and publicized that ever since Robert Varo took control of the largest homeowners association in Coto de Caza, the  CZ Master Association board of directors,  with direct support from Mr. James Harkins, the CZ Master Association board of directors has failed to comply with SB-61, SB1560 and  failed to abide by the business judgment rule, aka good faith, enabling Mr.  Varo et al to rule the community with impunity for over ten years.

by: Joyce Kilmer (1886-1918)
 THINK that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;

The Coto de Caza Gate Access Does Not Prevent Crime of Opportunity, Rather it Provides an Opportunity for Crime

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - From covering homeowners association disputes for over ten years, we can comfortably say that the  Stanford Prisoner Syndrome is alive and well.  Otherwise insignificant residents who get elected to homeowner association board of directors, quickly get intoxicated  with a new-found power that they become abusive, autocratic and vindictive when residents do not do as told.

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