17 San Bruno residents have been fighting to save two 100 year old trees from their demise. They appealed the City’s decision to cut them down. Their Appeal was heard on Tuesday November 13th during the City Council Meeting. The trees sit in the Heart of San Bruno on the site of the future Florida Ave Park. The residents contend the 2 Heritage Trees should remain where they have stood for a century. The City says one tree has cones that are dangerous and the other tree isn’t pretty. The residents said there are thousands of cone producing trees in our parks, schools and hanging over city sidewalks. They say its more likely a child would be injured falling off a play structure than being hit by a falling cone. They offered solutions to safeguard the public and keep the beautiful trees. Their full argument can be viewed by clicking on the video below.
The trees predate San Bruno’s incorporation in 1914. There are very few large trees left in our downtown neighborhoods. Most have been cut down. Many in our city question the lack of care for our Urban Forest. More trees are cut each year than planted.
After hearing the resident’s Appeal, the Council failed to ask questions. They instead rushed to a vote without concern for the arguments raised by residents. Council member Irene O’Connell and Vice Mayor Davis chastised the resident group for criticizing city staff and the process. It appears the council had decided to cut them down before hearing the appeal.
The Council heard from 17 residents who wanted the trees to remain. No one at the appeal wanted them cut down, except the council members. The City Council failed to support the residents and their Appeal. The way our city handled this may be why so many in our city have decided to disengage when it comes to local politics. Many have questioned City’s direction, transparency and poor communication. Few get involved because they feel their ideas and concerns are not heard. For the moment it appears we can expect more of the same from the new council and city manager.
We look to a day when our collective voices matter. When it comes we will have the responsive government most of us wish for when we cast our votes. We look forward to city council elections in 2019 and 2020. Its time to vote for council members who listen to the residents and who follow through with their campaign promises. Are you interested in running for a city council seat in 2019? Are you interested in showing your support for the people of San Bruno? If so, please email us at Sanbrunonow@gmail.com and lets start a discussion.
City Council Voted 4 to 0 to cut down 2 100 year old Historical Trees in the Heart Of San Bruno! Mayor Medina, Vice Mayor Davis, Council members Salazar & O’Connell voted to cut them down.
Council member Marty Medina was recused from the vote because he lives near the future Florida Park site.
Watch the VIDEO HERE. The Resident appeal begins approx minute 24…
A message of support written by prominent San Francisco Tree Advocate and Attorney, Joshua Klipp.
I’m about 60min into the video and I have to say you have an incredibly articulate, passionate and awesome group of humans there in San Bruno. Wow. The gentleman who quoted John Muir, the man who talked about seniors not being pretty and symmetrical, the woman who asked hospitals for their stats on pine cone injuries, your attorney Mr. Flanders. I haven’t even gotten to the end yet (unfortunately I know how it ends) but I can see why you believe you have a council of fools. Why on earth in the face of that sort of passionate community engagement (with an attorney, even) would the council blunder forward and vote to remove. It’s unbelievable and they don’t deserve your citizen support.