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   Cutting down dead cedar trees on your own property to prevent wildfires? That'll be a $140,000 fine

08 Dec 2012 12:47 PM   |   13066 clicks   |   Austin Statesman
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Weaver95    [TotalFark]  
And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.

08 Dec 2012 11:42 AM
MaudlinMutantMollusk    [TotalFark]  
Hell, I didn't even know they HAD trees in Texas

08 Dec 2012 11:48 AM
BalugaJoe     
RIP Dave Attel

www.goldentriangledc.comView Full Size

08 Dec 2012 12:49 PM
cousin-merle     
FTFA: "Attal, a well-known concert promoter, said that he cut down the dead junipers, also referred to as cedars, along busy Westlake Drive because he was afraid stray sparks or a discarded cigarette could ignite a wildfire."

Yeah, right.

08 Dec 2012 12:51 PM
midway_the_great     
This isn't Texas, this is Austin.

08 Dec 2012 12:52 PM
drewogatory     
Huh, sounds like something a licensed contractor would have known all about, having to deal with it on a daily basis. Not so much the guys from out front of Home Depot I guess.

08 Dec 2012 12:54 PM
ElLoco     

cousin-merle: FTFA: "Attal, a well-known concert promoter, said that he cut down the dead junipers, also referred to as cedars, along busy Westlake Drive because he was afraid stray sparks or a discarded cigarette could ignite a wildfire."

Yeah, right.


Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.

08 Dec 2012 12:55 PM
bmihura     

Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.


But this is in Austin, the one liberal city in Texas (NOT conservative/libertarian). That's the opposite of "free of government interference".

08 Dec 2012 12:58 PM
Nick Nostril     
Cash grab.

08 Dec 2012 01:00 PM
mactobain     
Westlake /= Austin

08 Dec 2012 01:01 PM
Jixa     

midway_the_great: This isn't Texas, this is Austin.


It's not Austin. It's West Lake.

08 Dec 2012 01:02 PM
LordJiro     
City officials said it is illegal to remove a tree in the city limits, living or dead, without a permit.

...Why?

08 Dec 2012 01:02 PM
vudukungfu    [TotalFark]  

Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.


riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight

08 Dec 2012 01:03 PM
Saberus Terras     
I live in Texas, and I think if he digs hard enough, there's a state law that requires dead trees be removed in areas at risk for wildfires... like Austin.

08 Dec 2012 01:03 PM
poe_zlaw     

Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.


drewogatory: Huh, sounds like something a licensed contractor would have known all about, having to deal with it on a daily basis. Not so much the guys from out front of Home Depot I guess.


No such thing as licenses for contractors in TX outside of electricians, plumbers, HVAC.

08 Dec 2012 01:03 PM
jimmyjackfunk     

ElLoco: cousin-merle: FTFA: "Attal, a well-known concert promoter, said that he cut down the dead junipers, also referred to as cedars, along busy Westlake Drive because he was afraid stray sparks or a discarded cigarette could ignite a wildfire."

Yeah, right.

Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.


Turn on the news in Oklahoma or Texas during the time when rain tapers off and wildfires start up. From a distance pretty amazing to see the damn things explode but seeing a whole stand of them go up is something straight out of an artist's rendition of Hell. Eastern Red Cedars aren't even native to Oklahoma yet years ago they were brought here (I believe as part of a W.P.A. project to ward off erosion from the dustbowl effects) Talk to any farmer or rancher most if they have the money, will gladly pay you to remove them. The amount of water that one tree uses is staggering. There are other trees out there that don't use as much water and can be attractive to the eye as well as being a shelter belt for erosion.

08 Dec 2012 01:03 PM
Saberus Terras     

Saberus Terras: I live in Texas, and I think if he digs hard enough, there's a state law that requires dead trees be removed in areas at risk for wildfires... like Austin the Austin area.


FTFM

08 Dec 2012 01:04 PM
dopekitty74     
Juniper and cedar are not the same thing. Juniper has needles and berries, the cedar's green bits are flat and sort of spatulated and they bear small brown soft cones, not berries.

/plus if i'm not mistaken, juniper berries were the basis for gin

08 Dec 2012 01:04 PM
lenfromak    [TotalFark]  

LordJiro: City officials said it is illegal to remove a tree in the city limits, living or dead, without a permit.

...Why?


Because property taxes.

08 Dec 2012 01:07 PM
Frantic Freddie     
ElLoco
Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.


This.

08 Dec 2012 01:09 PM
kendelrio     
Came expecting a HOA dispute, surprised it was a city.

/still hate HOAs.

08 Dec 2012 01:10 PM
bmihura     

Jixa: midway_the_great: This isn't Texas, this is Austin.

It's not Austin. It's West Lake.


It's not West Lake. It's West Lake Hills , which is almost exactly in the middle of Austin.

08 Dec 2012 01:14 PM
Yoyo     
Am I the only one who thinks it's ludicrous to measure trees by total combined trunk diameter? Wouldn't cross section area be a better choice? Of course, the math majors of the world don't go into writing laws about dead tree removal.

08 Dec 2012 01:14 PM
Mikeyworld     
The city is like an overblown HMO. Small-minded turds on power trips.Get your laws off my lawn! He should be suing for endangerment, they're DEAD trees, FFS

He should plant replacements that are saplings and let them die, then it'll be an act of God.

08 Dec 2012 01:14 PM
RKTeuthis     

dopekitty74: Juniper and cedar are not the same thing. Juniper has needles and berries, the cedar's green bits are flat and sort of spatulated and they bear small brown soft cones, not berries.

/plus if i'm not mistaken, juniper berries were the basis for gin


Using common names alone is a shiatty practice. Every Tom, Dick and Attal can use a different name for the same species.

Tell me the damned scientific name!

08 Dec 2012 01:14 PM
poe_zlaw     

Frantic Freddie: ElLoco
Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.


This.


Little did you two know that juniper trees are listed as one of the highest flammable trees due to the high resin / oil content of their branches and leaves. It is intensely quick burning.. when they are alive and especially if they are dead.

08 Dec 2012 01:15 PM
DeathByGeekSquad     
The town I grew up in instituted a 'Tree Council' which requires you to get permission to chop down trees on your lot - after a celebrity kindly chopped down almost all of the trees on their lot to prevent 'trespassing'.

08 Dec 2012 01:16 PM
Calabai_Yau     

bmihura: Jixa: midway_the_great: This isn't Texas, this is Austin.

It's not Austin. It's West Lake.

It's not West Lake. It's West Lake Hills , which is almost exactly in the middle of Austin.



"By contrast, the City of Austin requires a permit to cut down a tree on residential property only if the trunk is 19 inches in diameter or wider."

Reading comprehension indicates that West Lake Hills is different from the City of Austin.

08 Dec 2012 01:17 PM
coffee smells good     
government gone wild

08 Dec 2012 01:20 PM
Curious    [TotalFark]  
to all the numb nuts saying it's Austin

West Lake Hills is a city in Travis County, Texas, United States. The population was 3,063 at the 2010 census. The city of West lake Hills is a wealthy suburb of Austin, located on the west side of Austin on the edge of the Hill Country.

it's some uber rich snotty suburb with a HOA from hell. the idiot promoter is acting like an entitled cock and deserves the fine and replacement costs.

wonder why i'm glad i moved from austin 30+ years ago.

08 Dec 2012 01:22 PM
TheOther     
I've got a fever; and the only cure i more cedar!

08 Dec 2012 01:24 PM
whither_apophis     
Larch joke... "brought forth juniper berries"... larch... juniper... argh

08 Dec 2012 01:25 PM
jimmyjackfunk     

Yoyo: Am I the only one who thinks it's ludicrous to measure trees by total combined trunk diameter? Wouldn't cross section area be a better choice? Of course, the math majors of the world don't go into writing laws about dead tree removal.


not for sure if they are measuring diameter in standard inches or the other way (can't remember what it is called) When the company I worked for treated trees with a growth inhibitor, we used a special measuring tape. one inch on the tape equated to approximately 2 1/2 regular inches. So a tree measuring 19 regular inches would be 47 1/2 inches tree diameter. The reason it was measured like that dictated on how much of the inhibitor was injected into the root system. too much and the roots got burned and the tree would die out. too little and it didn't get the desired effect.
usually though the foresters would simply have the cedars cut out because the amount of chemical was too much. Additionally their big thing was they didn't want any type of cedar or pine near the power lines because if they went up, it took out the lines resulting in more $$ damages.

08 Dec 2012 01:28 PM
Jon iz teh kewl     
lawbreaker

snarkyselfhelper.files.wordpress.comView Full Size

08 Dec 2012 01:30 PM
megalynn44    [TotalFark]  
I love trees & have no problem with these types They take significant time investment and provide great environmental & aesthetic benefits. They also save money on cooling your home. My neighbor just chopped down over half the trees on his lot a few months ago. I glared at those contractors all day. Pissed me off to no end.

08 Dec 2012 01:30 PM
Beanlet     
We have an ugly line of 16 junipers in our front yard that creates a privacy line. I call them cat pee trees, since that is how they smell. And rather than privacy, they make ugliness. I would rather see cars driving down the street than those sticks. We live in an area where wildfires (actually, they are normally arson fires) happen every few years when the wind picks up. I can see these and the other firs in our back yard going up in big firebally flames.

I guess I should find out if a permit is needed before removing the matchsticks out front. The other trees have to stay though, they provide lots of benefits and are beautiful. Hopefully they will never catch a spark!

While I can see why a city would want to protect their trees, they might want to do more to work with people to get healthy, beautiful trees in their area, rather than forcing homeowners to simply keep what is there. This guy had plans to plant trees he wants to enjoy that won't go up in flames if someone sneezes at them. And he probably doesn't like the cat pee smell either.

08 Dec 2012 01:32 PM
State_College_Arsonist     
This is an obvious cash grab by the city. There's no reason that the property owner should need permission to remove trees. The fact that city officials were available to show up and stop the removal process demonstrates that there are at least one or two city workers with nothing better to do, and that there's room for savings in the personnel budget.

08 Dec 2012 01:34 PM
Oznog     

ElLoco: cousin-merle: FTFA: "Attal, a well-known concert promoter, said that he cut down the dead junipers, also referred to as cedars, along busy Westlake Drive because he was afraid stray sparks or a discarded cigarette could ignite a wildfire."

Yeah, right.

Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.


Cedar trees do this weird thing when they grow big enough or in high density, all the lower branches die off under a dense crown. In sections of Walnut Creek Park here, there's sections of "spooky dead forest" where it's dark because of the forest crown but the place is a dense, impenetrable bramble of dead lower limbs. There's no green in sight. Just dry, white branches obscuring and blocking everything off the trail.

Yeah, it's pretty flammable, and they do LOOK like they're dead, but they're not

08 Dec 2012 01:36 PM
Nemo's Brother     

Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.


Clearly bigger government is needed

08 Dec 2012 01:36 PM
OtherLittleGuy    [TotalFark]  

bmihura: Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.

But this is in Austin, the one liberal city in Texas (NOT conservative/libertarian). That's the opposite of "free of government interference".


I thought that was Houston, home of the openly lesbian mayor and "fark you, red light cameras".

08 Dec 2012 01:39 PM
Beanlet     
Before the tree hugging begins, I want to clarify that we will be replacing the ugliness with some type of bushes, maybe some (short!) flowering bushes to attract more honeybees. These junipers block the view of the hills and half of the sky at night. They are taller than the house and full of ugh-liness!

We bought our house because it has one of the most beautiful tree lined back yards ever; flowers, fruit trees, fountains, ground cover, you name it. The front yard needs desperately to come up to the back yard standards!

08 Dec 2012 01:40 PM
Day_Old_Dutchie     
Government "Workers" - Overpaid seat-warmers, with brains that run at 1/10 speed of "normal" people. (if you have ever been waiting in line to be "served" by these ass clowns you can see they go about their day in slo-mo)

It's great when they say they provide "services". Services implies you are actually getting something of value for the money you give them in a reasonable time. All they give you is a piece of paper that stops other government "workers" s allegedly providing "services" from taking even more money from you.

Better pay attention next municipal elections.

08 Dec 2012 01:42 PM
Honest Bender    [TotalFark]  
City officials said it is illegal to remove a tree in the city limits, living or dead, without a permit.

Ahh, I can see where you might be confused. You see, the city ends at my property line. Past that, it's MY land. Not the city's. Gun day, sir. Oops, Freudian slip. I meant good day.

08 Dec 2012 01:44 PM
ElLoco     

State_College_Arsonist: This is an obvious cash grab by the city. There's no reason that the property owner should need permission to remove trees. The fact that city officials were available to show up and stop the removal process demonstrates that there are at least one or two city workers with nothing better to do, and that there's room for savings in the personnel budget.


I'm sincerely surprised that the trees were even allowed to remain at all.

Ordinance enforcement in many towns would issue the owner a removal warning just for having a dead branch near ground level on a living cedar. For a treeline of dead cedars? They'd cut them down and send you a bill. You can take a match and have an entire 30' cedar blazing all the way to the top in the time that you could find something on an oak or elm that would stay lit long enough to even consider trying to make a fire. It looks like the city officials have never been around cedar fires before.

08 Dec 2012 01:45 PM
angrymacface     

Weaver95: And remember - this is in Texas, a place considered to be a conservative/libertarian wild frontier that's free of government interference.


Remember, it's the Federal government that's the devil. Local government is ok.

08 Dec 2012 01:45 PM
reimanr06     

poe_zlaw: Frantic Freddie: ElLoco
Cedar trees biodegrade into gunpowder and jet fuel when they die. I agree with him.


This.

Little did you two know that juniper trees are listed as one of the highest flammable trees due to the high resin / oil content of their branches and leaves. It is intensely quick burning.. when they are alive and especially if they are dead.


I think they were saying the same thing, except as a metaphor.

08 Dec 2012 01:47 PM
kertus     

LordJiro: City officials said it is illegal to remove a tree in the city limits, living or dead, without a permit.

...Why?


Because. That's all YOU need to know Citizen!

08 Dec 2012 01:59 PM
jimmyjackfunk     

Beanlet: Before the tree hugging begins, I want to clarify that we will be replacing the ugliness with some type of bushes, maybe some (short!) flowering bushes to attract more honeybees. These junipers block the view of the hills and half of the sky at night. They are taller than the house and full of ugh-liness!

We bought our house because it has one of the most beautiful tree lined back yards ever; flowers, fruit trees, fountains, ground cover, you name it. The front yard needs desperately to come up to the back yard standards!


Link

ever considered these? not considered a tree although if you let them go they can get pretty big. Real pretty flowers and if you plant them right they grow into each other and you have a nice windbreak.

08 Dec 2012 02:00 PM
Beanlet     

jimmyjackfunk: Beanlet: Before the tree hugging begins, I want to clarify that we will be replacing the ugliness with some type of bushes, maybe some (short!) flowering bushes to attract more honeybees. These junipers block the view of the hills and half of the sky at night. They are taller than the house and full of ugh-liness!

We bought our house because it has one of the most beautiful tree lined back yards ever; flowers, fruit trees, fountains, ground cover, you name it. The front yard needs desperately to come up to the back yard standards!

Link

ever considered these? not considered a tree although if you let them go they can get pretty big. Real pretty flowers and if you plant them right they grow into each other and you have a nice windbreak.


Oo pretty! We don't need more wind break, but ty for the suggestion. Those are great looking trees!

08 Dec 2012 02:05 PM
Pvt Joker     

Curious: to all the numb nuts saying it's Austin

West Lake Hills is a city in Travis County, Texas, United States. The population was 3,063 at the 2010 census. The city of West lake Hills is a wealthy suburb of Austin, located on the west side of Austin on the edge of the Hill Country.

it's some uber rich snotty suburb with a HOA from hell. the idiot promoter is acting like an entitled cock and deserves the fine and replacement costs.

wonder why i'm glad i moved from austin 30+ years ago.


West Lake Hills is in the 1% / Republicans zone:

www.escapeest.comView Full Size

08 Dec 2012 02:07 PM
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