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Posted by: thepinetree on 04/15/2015 09:20 AM Updated by: thepinetree on 04/15/2015 09:20 AM
Expires: 01/01/2020 12:00 AM
:



Pine Needle Removal In Calaveras County ~ By David Carr

Arnold, CA...As most of you know by now that we have a problem disposing of the pine needles this year. From what I understand on or about March 25, 2015 the co-generation plant has stopped/reduced the amount of pine needles they will be accepting. So this affected all of us business owners that do lot clean up as well as landscapers and anybody who has dealings with yard debris. This also affects the local residents as well...



Gene Miller stopped taking pine needles on March 26th while he searched for a solution. All of the lot cleaners were told on March 26th that he would not be taking them at our annual CDF meeting. Is it a coincidence, that all of this was done on the same day as our lot cleaning meeting. On Wednesday April 1st Gene Miller started taking pine needles again.

Gene Miller is a private facility and he raised his price from $6.00 per yard to $8.00 per yard which is a 33% increase to us lot cleaners and to the local residents. This is no fault to Gene Miller because he has to do whatever it takes to stay profitable and in business. He is currently hauling all of the pine needles to Rock Creek Quarry which is further than the cogeneration plant which is why he increased his prices to pay for his fuel and time.

We the residents, lot cleaners and landscapers do have another choice. That choice is Red Hill Transfer Station down in Angels Camp. This facility charges $4.00 per yard to dump at this facility. It is open from Friday – Monday. I believe the hours are from 9 to 5:30. Call to verify business hours. This facility is funded through our local taxes and we the residents pay to have it hauled to Rock Creek Quarry through the disposal fees we pay each time we dump.

Since this dilemma, our newly elected supervisor of district 3, Michael Oliveira and I have had a couple of e-mails back and forth regarding this topic (more than happy to share them with interested parties). His solution is to raise prices to the consumer to pay for additional costs. As a business owner here in the Calaveras County, also a local resident I’m tired of having to raise prices (which I have not done in years due to the local competition) to pay for some ones else price increases when it is not necessary. I can haul my customer’s pine needles to Red Hill now and not increase their price. However, from what Michael Oliveira says, we business owners/commercial haulers which pay taxes to this county are no longer allowed to use this facility because of a permit issue. It’s funny that none of this was ever an issue before. There have been commercial haulers dumping there for years and nothing ever has been mentioned until now. I believe I have the right as a resident and business owner to see this permit and read it for myself to see if there are any conditions set forth in this document. I was also told by Michael Oliveira which I have in writing that we lot cleaners and landscapers could haul the material to Rock Creek Quarry free of charge. I called and talked with them myself this morning and talked with Dora at (209) 754-6403 and this is not true. Rock Creek Quarry is charging $4.00 per yard to dispose of the yard waste. I have heard excuse after excuse why we can’t dump there. The first excuse was the county can’t afford to haul it to Rock Creek Quarry. So I asked, where did the funds go! No, answer to this question. I stated that we pay taxes to have this transfer station in Angles Camp and that every resident as well as every business owner has the right to use this facility. I was told then that there was a permit issue for commercial haulers/lot cleaners/landscapers. The county’s solution is to either haul it to Gene Millers at double the price or haul it to Rock Creek Quarry. Neither of these options is viable to the residents of Calaveras County. Some of us might be close enough to Rock Creek Quarry that this may not be a big deal but for the residents of Angels Camp, Vallecito, Douglas Flats, Hathaway Pines, Avery, Arnold, Blue Lake Springs, Big Trees as well as Dorrington this is a 3 hour plus round trip to Rock Creek Quarry so this option would be very expensive to the consumer. Then Michael Oliveira stated that there was a 2 yard limit on all yard debris. I asked what the difference would be if the resident hauled in 2 yards at a time or if they hauled in 10 yards at one time. The cost to remove it will still be the same. There is nothing that I have seen either at Red Hill Transfer Station or on the flyer date 4/1/2015 that they made up 5 days after Gene Miller said they were not taking pine needles anymore, that states you can only dump 2 yards at time. All the county has done is cause a larger problem. Now we have residents having to drive five times down to dump their pine needles, spend more money on gas, expel more pollution and cause a huge carbon footprint. I thought we were working on reducing greenhouse gases.
The residents of this county are mandated by the state to clean their lots according to CDF Rules and Regulations. Most residents would agree that this is a good thing however the county has made it where we are forced to use a private entity or haul it to the local landfill. In this person eyes this is price fixing and real close monopolization. There is not another facility within our county to compete with these two options except the Red Hill Transfer Station. Once again, as a resident of Calaveras County all of us pay taxes to use Red Hill Transfer Station so if the county has a problem then they need to figure out how to make it work. The County set the disposal fee we the residents accepted the fee so why can’t we dump? The county should be off hauling the debris during the time they are closed so they do not run into any issues with their permit. All of this seems to be excuses for the county so they don’t have to expend any money and they want us residents and business owners to pick up all additional costs even though we already pay taxes and disposal fees for this facility.
This is one resident/Business Owner that is feed up with our local government. People in office need to be held accountable for miss managing our funds. They have robbed Peter to pay Paul so much they can’t cover up their misuse of the funds anymore. It’s time for all of us to join together and say this is enough. The government is out to take as much money from each of us that they possibly can so we can’t resist or fight back for our rights.
If there are residents, yard cleaners and landscapers that feel the same as I do lets from a rally and take back our rights.

Best Regards,
D & L Cleaning Services
David L. Carr (Owner)

P.S. The intent of this message is not to but blame on Gene Miller or Michael Oliveira. Gene is a private business owner doing what is in his best interest so that he can stay in business and be profitable. This is not Michael Oliveira’s fault either. He inherited this mess from his predecessor. But it is time for all representatives of this county to be responsible for their actions.


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No Subject
Posted on: 2015-04-15 09:39:42   By: Anonymous
 
There is a huge open area out by White Pines, only yard waste could be brought there, hire a few honest people to tend it, and lite it up!

[Reply ]

    Re:
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:33:48   By: Anonymous
     
    Call Dave also at 12097952100 your local coldwell banker agent in Arnold

    [Reply ]

      Re:
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 22:02:23   By: Anonymous
       
      Also this this person Dave Carr only has non usa men working for him does not pay taxes on them so easy for him to cry about this

      [Reply ]

        Re:
        Posted on: 2015-04-16 10:38:43   By: Anonymous
         
        OSHA got him, don't worry! That is public record.

        [Reply ]

    Re:
    Posted on: 2015-04-16 17:06:48   By: Anonymous
     
    also this man had told every person in town he was dying of cancer also so stuck us tax payers with his home he lost to the bank and all the loans he did not pay then got a new home in his new wifes name this man is baby that crys to much go back to the bay d and l

    [Reply ]

This is laughable
Posted on: 2015-04-15 09:43:02   By: Anonymous
 
We are all managing to haul our pine needles. Commercial and private. So the extra cost to manage our forest is about $20 to $40 more. These were circumstances beyond our control. So, we pay a little more to protect our homes. Sorry Dave, sounds like you are just do a lot of whining. You cannot pin this on Merita either. Good grief. If you sort your loads and haul clean loads to Gene Miller's there isn't a problem. Its only $2.00 more per yard. Everybody worked to hard to bring resolution a couple of weeks ago to the problem. My experience is that the current situation is working.


[Reply ]

    Re: This is laughable
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 10:22:11   By: Anonymous
     
    It is not laughable. When will the tax increases end (or fees as leftists call them)? When will governement imposition decline? The government tells me how much water I can flush and how many watts my lightbulb can produce. I can't burn the needles because the smoke is polluting the air so I guess I'll drive them to a disposal yard. Wait, that's pollution too isn't it? And how's that fire prevention tax (excuse me, fee) working out for you? Would be nice to see those funds used towards homeowners preventing fires by clearing their lots.

    Yes, it's only a few dollars more, but where's the logic? Where's the accountability? Take a look at Sacramento. The government is the only entity benefitting from our taxes (translation: fees)

    [Reply ]

      Re: This is laughable
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 10:35:44   By: Anonymous
       
      What are you thinking? Prices would just stay the same forever. That is never the way it works. Prices don't fall, they go up. That's the way it works, point the finger at whoever you want. You want a business you get all the upkeep and overhead that goes with it. You don't like it, get the fudge out.

      [Reply ]

        Re: This is laughable
        Posted on: 2015-04-15 14:19:07   By: Anonymous
         
        Yep! More people means more services, regulations, costs. When I was a kid we made 80 cents an hour, gas was 22 cents. Times change, the more we have the more we need. No use crying and moaning about it. Generally, life is better than 100 years ago.

        [Reply ]

          Re: This is laughable
          Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:51:01   By: Anonymous
           
          Bull*bleep*! People who lived when prices were that cheap might say "yep", but they don't write it. Back then our not-yet-broken school system taught their students how to write in proper English. Obviously this is a troll who graduated from Brett Harte High circa last year.

          [Reply ]

            Re: This is laughable
            Posted on: 2015-04-16 05:29:07   By: Anonymous
             
            I think someone needs to class in the history of the US educational system. It's ok though, your probably just cranky today.

            [Reply ]

            Re: This is laughable
            Posted on: 2015-04-16 18:19:06   By: Anonymous
             
            How wrong you are about the poster of " Yep". Try Doctorate degree. I guess we have to use formal English for some of the "dingbats" that post insults to a legitimate expression of opinion.

            [Reply ]

        Re: This is laughable
        Posted on: 2015-04-18 13:24:08   By: Anonymous
         
        To all of you that think this is laughable or that I'm whining to you. This posting got exactly what I was hoping to do! It got everybody talking about it and maybe we can find a solution that is suitable for everyone. I expected to take hits and get a little bloody from this posting but at least I have the nerve to stand up and be accounted for. At least I do not hide behind the anonymous. If you want to be brave put your name to your posting so everyone can see who you are.

        [Reply ]

    Re: This is laughable
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:40:24   By: Anonymous
     
    Mr Carr how much money do u take from the school for work u did not do this year so what sir are u on

    [Reply ]

Blame game
Posted on: 2015-04-15 09:44:48   By: Anonymous
 
Well, while professing not intending to blame others, you certainly DID SO! You don't want to pay more, charge more, etc., BUT, we ALL need to deal with the situation as it is, not as it WAS or could have been if something had been handled differently in the PAST! Thank goodness we have a new, honest Supervisor and everyone is doing their best to flush out the situations so that everyone can make the best choices for disposing of their needles. Let's deal with the circumstances as they are, which as basic economics 101 would confirm, may require paying more. (Whining doesn't help.)

[Reply ]

    Re: Blame game
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 11:01:03   By: Anonymous
     
    You can always sell you vacation home and stay in San Fransico!

    [Reply ]

      Re: Blame game
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 11:02:06   By: Anonymous
       
      Or stop being lazy and burn that waste!

      [Reply ]

Cost of lot clearing
Posted on: 2015-04-15 11:19:12   By: Anonymous
 
Dear Mr. Oliveira,

Re: Dump Costs

I’m sending this letter to see if it can’t be discussed at a council meeting because as a resident in Big Trees Subdivision. We have been required to clean our lots from 30 to 100 feet.

You will see that we pay Ron Cooper $395.00 to clean our lot. This charge is acceptable because it is mostly labor.

My concern is that the governmental agencies are causing a financial burden on property owners, especially seniors living in the areas need to be cleaned by increasing the dump costs.
I think that the county should attempt to reign in these costs since we have no other way except burning, which is discouraged and stopped, to dispose of the needles.

The debris removal cost has gone from $72.00 to $115.00 an increase of 38% per load.

Please help.


[Reply ]

well stated
Posted on: 2015-04-15 12:38:10   By: Anonymous
 
thank you for a thoughtful letter.
I am paying and extra $100 dollars this year.
I expect to get a full lot cleaned with the increase in price.
Fixed income and disabled,I'll have to give some thing up in order to meet the clearance rules.
Nickle and diming us seems to be the way of the future

[Reply ]

    Re: well stated
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 13:16:52   By: Anonymous
     
    Perhaps we should dropp them off at the CalFire station and they can use the fire tax money to deal with it.
    Or, we could setup and old fashioned wigwam burner in White Pines to compliment the logging museum.

    [Reply ]

      Re: well stated
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 14:44:30   By: Anonymous
       
      Why not just burn down Arnold and be done with it ! Never seen a town with so many whiners. You chose to live there, deal with it, or move to Rock Creek.

      [Reply ]

        Re: well stated
        Posted on: 2015-04-15 18:20:06   By: Anonymous
         
        that's racist.

        [Reply ]

          Re: well stated
          Posted on: 2015-04-16 18:12:09   By: Anonymous
           
          Master Baiter

          [Reply ]

      Re: well stated
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 14:47:19   By: Anonymous
       
      I think you need to research this issue further, peel back the onion as they sometimes say. You will find that the County used to take pine needles in the 80's until it became overwhelming for the County to take care of. The County in there wisdom voted to eliminate pine needles as "solid waste" so it could be removed from their Responsibility.

      The real elephant in the room is the parcel tax everyone pays for the use of the transfer stations and Landfill could not pay for the cost of handling pine needles. So if pine needles were no longer considered "solid waste" the county had virtually no responsibility for their removal or disposal. In the early 90' the rules changed and 100 ft clearing became the rule which created many more tons of Pine needles.. At that time Gene Miller, Brian Rowley and Rick Downey opened facilities to take care of the pine needle issues. This worked well as long as the C0-gen plant would take the chipped material, it actually had value if it was mixed properly with Green Waste. The 3 private Companies did a good job but of course it was never good enough on Memorial Day weekend and the complaints would come in to Merita and she got involved.

      Now it appears that the C0-gen will not take the material and the reality is that the County doesn't get enough from their parcel fee to pay the freight. The County has been hesitant to raise the fee because it would take 66% of the voters to approve the hike. so what they have done is increase certain rates at the transfer stations to make up the shortfall from their fear to take an increase of the Parcel tax to the voters.

      So don't blame Miller, he has stepped up to the plate many times and invested his money to help with the problem. Brian Rowley has done the same and they get nothing but grief from the "lot cleaners". I personally wish that Gene and Brian would shut down so the whinning would reach a feverous pitch and the county would have to do more than they are doing now. In the meantime since that isn't going to happen stop complaining about Gene and Brian, they have done their part.

      [Reply ]

        Re: well stated
        Posted on: 2015-04-15 19:43:26   By: Anonymous
         
        Mr. Cooper has an odd way of processing his pine needles.
        They smolder and flame up,sometimes unattended.
        There has to be a better way to take care of all these pine needles. Our new supervisor is trying but it'll be hard to please everyone.I just wish that those who burn would stop burning wet pine needle....that is bad smoke.


        [Reply ]

          Re: well stated
          Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:21:59   By: Anonymous
           
          It is illegal to burn yard waste not grown on your property.

          [Reply ]

        Re: well stated
        Posted on: 2015-04-18 14:08:51   By: Anonymous
         
        You are correct. Gene and Brian both have stepped up to the plate when needed. Once again Gene has stepped up to the plate and has helped. This has nothing to do with Gene. This is not personal. I just wanted to bring this to every ones attention. The county's reply was to use this facility at double the price when we pay for another through our taxes which costs only $4.00 per yard instead of $8.00 per yard. I'm trying to save my customers higher fees but the county has but a stop to it. That is what I'm upset about. Nowhere does it state on the annex sign at Red Hill that this facility will not accept yard waste from us lot cleaners (which we are called commercial haulers now) on it. If it has restrictions then why where they not posted before this?

        [Reply ]

        Re: well stated
        Posted on: 2015-05-23 11:26:31   By: Anonymous
         
        Extremely well said and very accurate.. The solid waste fee is for solid waste. Pine needles are not solid waste per our county ordinance. This is a Cal Fire ordinance. Complain to them. They too receive a fee from every property owner up here.

        [Reply ]

      Re: well stated
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:43:26   By: Anonymous
       
      Dump them off at cal fire. They are sitting on millions of cap and trade money and our SRA fee $ and could return some in the form of subsidies for biomass transfer. Without massive outcry they will ignore us and give the $ to big timber owners.

      [Reply ]

    Re: well stated
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 15:03:47   By: Anonymous
     
    It is tough living from check to check and trying to keep up. it is tough for a college kid, a young family, and many of the retired and disabled.

    Perhaps CalFire could help out for those that really need it. They have hand crews and trucks. The hand crews do community work. Could young kids who want to earn a few bucks rake and bake the needles, and put them on the street, then CalFireCDC hand crews could load and haul to the disposal site.

    [Reply ]

LETS FIND A SOLUTION
Posted on: 2015-04-15 16:08:06   By: Anonymous
 
A few of you have made some positive suggestions. Others merely play the blame game. I agree that we should get something from parcel taxes (er, fees) that we all pay for waste disposal and fire protection. How? Let's have a public meeting and search out the true nature of the problem and then put our heads together to design a solution. Then we can work together to make that plan successful.

[Reply ]

    Re: LETS FIND A SOLUTION
    Posted on: 2015-04-16 07:20:38   By: Anonymous
     
    "we should get something from parcel taxes (er, fees) that we all pay for waste disposal and fire protection"
    We do get something, we dump "our waste" this is more of a complaint from a business owner, who wants to dump his business waste for free and not want to raise his prices to his customers who can't do the work for themselves because of age/health/ limited income etc. It makes it much more difficult on our elders, and those on a fixed income.


    [Reply ]

      Re: LETS FIND A SOLUTION
      Posted on: 2015-04-16 10:56:46   By: Anonymous
       
      Not true! I pay for garbage and recycle pickup AND for waste disposal. But when I take garden waste to Red Hill, I pay again. I don't mind paying for services provided but not otherwise. The choice should be the individual's, not the government's. As for the fire "fee," I object to paying two fire agencies.

      [Reply ]

      Re: LETS FIND A SOLUTION
      Posted on: 2015-04-16 11:17:44   By: Anonymous
       
      Or because he is a business man who can't pass anymore cost on to his customers because he started out the gate with high prices. I wonder if he gives his snow removal customers a break next year? He sure made excellent money not plowing snow this winter.

      [Reply ]

No Subject
Posted on: 2015-04-15 16:28:42   By: Anonymous
 
The fire clearance laws were not made by the local government but are state regulations. The dumps are intended for "garbage" not for massive amounts of pine needles and the county dump is filling fast and will soon need replacement at a massive cost of local tax money.
Local busineses (cogeneration plants and even storing needles until they turned into sellable mulch) relieved a lot of the problem but once they no longer wanted all the pine needles, the issues returned.
There is no easy answer for what to do with the pine needles. They are always there and the state fire law will continue to require they be removed each year. Individuals can hire a bin to put them in and let the company who owns the bin figure out where to dump then; can hire a lot cleaning company who then will also have to figure out the answer of disposal and charge accordingly; or clean their own lots and burn or take a load to the dump themselves. But as long as people live in an area with trees they will have to deal with the fall out from those trees. It is kind of like living in the snow when most of the people in the county don't live in the snow and don't have to pay to have their driveway cleaned but the lower elevation homes have more heat and pay to air condition. Each area has it problems and those that live there have to figure out how to deal with them.

[Reply ]

No Subject
Posted on: 2015-04-15 17:34:37   By: Anonymous
 
I'm hauling my needles to the forest.

[Reply ]

    Re:
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 18:19:52   By: Anonymous
     
    This is for all of you whiners, if you can't stand the heat then get out of the kitchen. If you own property in Arnold then it is your responsibilty to keep your property clean no matter what it costs. Most of these whiners have an expensive home in the Bay Area and a very nice home in Arnold. They can afford to keep their properties cleaned year round. Sell your property and move on if you don't want to maintain your home.

    [Reply ]

      Re:
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 18:22:07   By: Anonymous
       
      that's also racist as well.


      [Reply ]

        Re:
        Posted on: 2015-04-16 18:13:30   By: Anonymous
         
        Master Baiter

        [Reply ]

    Re:
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 18:20:41   By: Anonymous
     
    Just burn already.

    DONT use local lot cleaners, they are all tweekers.
    Unlicensed, no insurance, toothless tweekers...

    Make a pile, and burn!

    [Reply ]

      Re:
      Posted on: 2015-04-15 19:46:20   By: Anonymous
       
      I love cleaning my lot and burning the needles!

      [Reply ]

        Re: well stated
        Posted on: 2015-04-15 20:31:22   By: Anonymous
         
        Dump them off at cal fire. They are sitting on millions of cap and trade money and our SRA fee $ and could return some in the form of subsidies for biomass transfer. Without massive outcry they will ignore us and give the $ to big timber owners.

        [Reply ]

No Subject
Posted on: 2015-04-15 21:01:11   By: Anonymous
 
Only retired and un-employed residents can burn Mon-Fri, which seem to be the majority of burn days. Complain to the unelected, state appointed air pollution aholas who rarely allow burn days on weekends. They sure make it hard for a working man to burn needles and leaves frequently enough to keep up.

[Reply ]

    Re:
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 21:40:03   By: Anonymous
     
    Im a full timer, with a 40-50 hour a week job who finds time to burn.
    But I do agree on not dealing with the local lot cleaners.



    [Reply ]

    Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
    Posted on: 2015-04-15 21:40:52   By: Anonymous
     
    Mr Carr, I hope you realize that the dump is paid by the homeowners property taxes who live here, not the residents who live here. It's not a free service for a private business owner to dump massive amounts of waste for a few individual businesses. I don't think the people who pay for the county dump fee's through their taxes, should have to pay more, for your business to stay in operation. What you'll need to do sir is actually raise your prices, your competition may have to do the same thing. I for one am tired of having to pay more for the same work, or paying more in taxes, but I don't want to have to pay more for our transfer station because of a few business owners haven't "raised their prices in years"
    Maybe you and other "commercial business owners" can sit down and find a solution between yourselves and not make us (property owners who pay for our dump) pay to keep you in business.

    [Reply ]

      Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
      Posted on: 2015-04-16 08:07:14   By: Anonymous
       
      Mr Carr doesn't operate that way. Nor does he do his homework before writing a letter that only leaves me wondering what he was on when he wrote it.
      The pine needle situation has been an ongoing problem for at least 20 years which predates Mr. Carr on the mountain
      He was a whiner when he owned his hash house and is still whining even though he was among the new lot cleaners driving the prices sky high a few years ago. Funny how some of the biggest crooks whine the loudest.

      [Reply ]

        Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
        Posted on: 2015-04-16 17:00:15   By: Anonymous
         


        [Reply ]

        Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
        Posted on: 2015-04-17 06:01:42   By: Anonymous
         
        Thanks for the info, and all of the other people about this Mr Carr. Seems if I owned property with pine trees, and he was working "for me" I'd find someone else to do the job. I can not stand a person who whines and blames others for his business problems.


        [Reply ]

          Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
          Posted on: 2015-04-17 06:03:31   By: Anonymous
           
          P. S. Aren't you rather embarrassed Mr Carr/? It seems you inserted your foot, or maybe both in your mouth.

          [Reply ]

            Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
            Posted on: 2015-04-17 07:25:32   By: Anonymous
             
            I think cleaning pine needles every year is not necessary. If bear clover can be 4 inches high what fire danger is created with a
            years dropping of needles? Cut the disposal volume in half.
            Most properties with structures in Arnold have been raked yearly
            for many years. Vegetation Management is not Fire Prevention.
            Alternate years (odd/even address) for cleaning might be the
            solution.


            [Reply ]

      Re: Mr Carr, who pays for the transfer station?
      Posted on: 2015-04-18 12:18:46   By: Anonymous
       
      Not once did I say I wanted to dump for free!!! What I'm stating is that the transfer station at Red hill is used by the local residents and paid through our property taxes. They set a fee for dumping and I'm willing to pay for that fee and pass it onto the customer. So what is the problem? I'm wiling to pay for everything that I do but do not want to be told that you have to use a specific facility at twice the price.

      [Reply ]


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