tv [untitled] December 22, 2013 10:30pm-11:01pm PST
the obligation and the duty to address that conflict of interest and to grant our rehearing. i will introduce a co-on the deal, and she is with the park merced and has a background in environmental policy law and we will be presenting here the case for the conflict of interest in this particular item, thank you. >> good evening. most of park merced inhabitants live there because it is a beautiful and peaceful and a true luxury in a big city. to destroy this treasure for profit is a malicious acts, this makes us and me friends
think that this is not the first time, how can we know that all of the previous maintenance tree issues were honest and ethical. conflict of interest arises in a situation which is actual, potential or perceived conflict exists that caused undue with constitutional responsibility and such as performing research results etc. and this is the case here. and in today's conflict of interest, i want to know about the environmental impact report and eir shall be repaired when there is serious public controversy and this is not just about trees, but it is about everything going on in the park, including the project to tear it down, this iconic, only two of a kind, in the west of the mississippi garden of apartment complex, where the environment is foremost to be preserved and protected in
these days. this is not something that we take for granted it is a prize to be protected. last time someone was discussing park merced as available land. this land is just as available as his own backyard. we live there, we love it there. and we want to protect it and there is too much unethical controversy surrounding this. the eir, this that is a big problem and the three trees are just a image of the whole problem going on, when a project has the potential to degrade the quality of the environment or eliminate the important examples of history and the prehistory and the park is a important example of the history and because there are only two such iconic gardens west of the mississippi it needs to be protect and
preserved, when it has the potential to achieve the goals, to the disadvantage of long term environmental goals, this is seriously damaging our quality of life at park merced to take down those beautiful houses and put up a project that has no place there, there is no room, the transportation is not ready for that, there is not water to go around for everybody, and this is just too many and i have not seen the eir but i am sure that there is a lot of conflict theres and we cannot this less, when a project has possible environmental effects, which are individually limited but considerable that will effect us all and this will take 30 years and basically we are going to are surrounded by huge amounts of pollution and noise for a significant amount of decades, when the environmental effect of the project will
adverse effect on the human beings, this is bolting directly and incorrectly. by constantly and unnecessarily cutting down the park's tagged and majestic pines, the bureau of urban forestry is making the long term impacts on the lives and the environment, this is not good for a garden apartment complex, this is all about preserving the environment not just going in there. and cutting down and thinking that putting a small tree instead of a 60-year-old tree is going to make an impact. it does not guarantee that will reach the majority, one cannot let a child provide the work adult. they have failed to provide the eir, this report is mandatory because it prevents harm to humans and the environment, failing to disclose the work, or provide the reports from the eir is a failure to disclose the pertinent information and this is clearly a conflict of
interest. how long this conflict of interest existed i would like to see the history of who choped the trees down and who, there should be clear and precise reasons for altering the ground, if not there is no reason to touch the trees, if the trees are touched without the reason that is fraud lent and retribution should be considered, thank you. >> okay. we can hear from the permit holder now. is there anyone here representing park merced. okay. and then we can hear from the department, then. >> karl sharp bureau of urban forestry, just a couple of points that i don't want to make, we don't support the new hearing request and there is not new information that is per nant to the case, i would like to correct a few items that
were stated. mr. lagos record was any documentation associated with these proposed removal and including all that they have had with park merced that was provided to him and not only did i not have any documents relating to any contract that the rec park may have with arbor well, he did not ask for them and i would not have had anything to give him. however if i had known about this relationship, between recreation and the park department, and arbor well this really would have no issue on our bearing of permits, the permits are issued to the property owner, they can hire whoever meets the guidelines to do the work, as long as it is done in compliance with the city standards, also in the dpw actions are unrelated to the what the parks department may do under its own authority over
golden gate park and also note that i am not aware of any recommendation by the urban forestly council to award any contract that is not under the council's purview, that is not something that is done. i don't think that is happened. >> i took my seat and i have not seen it happen, i do not believe that there is a conflict of interest here and i think that this is a red herring and i would ask you not to grant the rehearing. >> i have a request. >> sure. >> so, i do remember the contractor stating that he makes no money. and the contract with the city and council, he is profiting? is that what his contract s is for removing trees? >> i honestly do not know the details of the contract, it is a contract with another city department, i have not seen it. i presume that it does exist, i don't know if it even exists
>> that would present a problem, because he actually presented that he makes no money off of cutting trees down. >> i don't want to speak for him, i think that he speaks about he makes more money on a pruning verses a one-time removal. >> they are not here to represent. >> okay, thank you. >> miss short. >> go for it. >> excuse me. >> thank you. >> i assume that the bureau does hire tree companies on occasion? >> on occasion, we have over own crew and most of the woshlg is the dpw crews and we have occasionally contract. >> the rfp process and there could be standards and etc.. >> that is right. thank you. >> i don't have any question any more, thank you. >> i want to see if there is anyone here representing park merced and there is none and is there any public comment?
>> good evening, commissioners my name is cathy and i am a 60-year resident of the park and i was in the park yesterday, and i saw two or three arbor well trucks removing an enormous tree on this street that goes between sunset boulevard and 19th avenue and so they are removing trees for the city, thank you. >> >> is there any other public comment? >> seeing none, the matter is submitted. >> i have a question for mr. lagos. >> okay. >> yes. >> your brief, mentions the
contract with or for tree removal and golden gate park. >> yes. >> and it mentions something related to cpmc. >> which departments, you don't indicate specific departments, that the contract is with? >> well, the contract with the golden gate park, is, there was, i believe, done with, and rec and park. >> and the contract at cpnc was done at the department of public works. >> yes, dpw. and that is what i was able to glean from my research. okay. >> thank you. >> and i have a follow up question. >> yes. >> where did you get that information? >> i don't see any proof of these contracts existing? >> on the internet. the contracts are in the minutes of the rec and park meetings of february of this year and september. >> did you attach those to your brief? >> no.
i didn't. for the record, they are in the minutes of those meetings. >> and just as a follow up to that question, was, and you discovered this after the hearing? yes. >> and was there anything preventing you from... it was on the internet prior to and at the time of the hearing weren't they? this information about it? >> i don't know. ma'am, personally. >> your hearing was in the meeting minutes from february of this year? >> yes. this information was brought to my attention by miss carpio who spoke here last month. she brought this to my attention after that hearing. and said there might be a conflict of interest here. and we need to look at it. now she is not here tonight, and there may be grounds here for a rehearing request and we believe that we can't get any justice from this body we will take it to the ethics commission or further up the line, we believe that these
permits should be revoked because of this conflict of interest. thank you. >> sure. >> i want to add something. >> do you have a question for her? >> i do, would you care to comment on the contract with cpmc? >> yes, we issued the permits to the property owners, they did not have a contract to remove the trees, they were private, they may have had a contract with arbor well, but our permits are issued to the property owner, even if the contractor acts as their agent, thank you. >> i would like to ask the requestor to representative to come back up please? i have a question. >> yes. >> so based on what the department just stated with
respect to their direct, the absence of any direct contractual relationship with arbor well, it is difficult for me to see the conflict. >> well, we believe that the conflict interests maybe from the referrals, that the city gives to some of the private requests here, they make... and we really don't know how far this goes. we believe that it has been mentioned to me that according to her research, arbor well is on the city's prefered vendor list. >> where is that research? >> she is not here tonight, madam president. >> right. you are asking for a rehearing based on what appears to be speculation and i have not seen a document or any direct evidence. >> if you dwrant a rehearing tonight we will bring that in. >> based on the rehearing would be a presentation about a conflict and i don't have
enough here to support that. >> you may not but another body will. >> i don't have any more questions for you. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> any other comments or questions? >> basis to grant a hearing request, there is no proof that the contracts are with dpw or with golden or with parks and rec. i don't see a conflict. >> do you have a motion? >> i move to deny the hearing request. >> we have a motion from commissioner hurtado to deny these rehearing requests. on that motion, commissioner fung? >> aye. >> president hwang? >> aye. >> lazarus? >> aye. >> commissioner honda. >> aye. >> thank you, the vote is 5-0. and all three rehearing
requests are denied and notices of decision in order shall be released. we continued item 5 to january 29th. we will hear appeal number 1 3-140, david polatnick, verses the department of planning inspection, with planning department approval, on 1532 coal street protesting the issuance on october 22, 2013 of alteration permit of addition of new office space in rear yard below associated patio and the natural grade and demo exterior rear wall and this is on for hearing tonight. and we can start with the appellant who has seven minutes. >> okay.
>> my name is david and thank you for hearing this issue. we have lived at 1526 coal street for over 22 years. and we have a good neighborly relationship with peter and andrea for the last 15 years, an example of this relationship that has been you know, over all of these years as they demos their house and rebuilt it and during that period of time we never made any public, you know, efforts to deny or to delay it, we were supportive of that project, and you can see it here as something to you know, protest that project. we are, you know, pro projects like that going forward, we feel that the property owners have certain rights and we were encouraging that one. >> so i come here reluctantly
and it is not a forum that i would look to seek and i would rather work it out with the original property owner. but it looks like they put together a good team that helped to build out the project. and we are not really trying to stop the project. the project has moved forward very quickly, and we did not get any 30-day notice about the project, and you know, it was not, and it did not go through the normal process, it was proposed as a garage. but, yet, you know, the uses are kind of in the back of the house, and as of an office space or art studio, but not the garage where you can access it from the front with a car. if you can turn this on, and there it is. >> and just depicts the backyard, fence line and you
know, a large cypress tree. >> that is your yard? >> yes, it is one of the trees that we will speak about tonight, that tree in particular over the years we have invested 10,000 into the tree, to keep it safe and to take the weight off of the top of the tree, and our neighbors when they were talking about this project and they said that if the tree was in danger they would not do the project at all. that is one of the issues that danger of it creating, you know, putting the tree at risk. we live at the bottom of the tank hill and there was an article about the twin peaks
that had problems and i am not sure of the details of that, but the water and redirection of the water is an important issue and because we had not given notice we did not have any toim to look at the engineering reports or the soil reports or any studies from the water proofing. our neighbors to the south was not noticed at all, they gave us a letter that wanted me to present and they have concerns about the tree as well as, the water, changing. the proposed project is 640 square feet which is a large project, that is going without notice, it is the size of the oval office in washington, d.c..
i will have my architect come in and i brought in our person as well. >> good evening, my name is jace, and i am the president of architecture and i have been practicing for 25 years and i have three main points, one, there are questions, with the height and depth of the proposed addition, that appear not to conform with planning code section 134 and 136, i have outlined these in our brief and although in the response brief the project sponsors have submitted revised drawings, the primary questions concerning proposed height above the allowable feet, or aabove the allowable three feet, and proposed depth, greater than 12 feet into the rear of the yard, remain unanswered. and two, given the placement of
the new addition in the rear yard, the approval basis of this project, is planning code section 136, c26, and this is the language of that here and it refers to the garage, and it is not specific about that, it does not say a room, or a studio or a living room it clearly says a garage, and to me rntion a garage is purely an uninhabitable and we feel to use that without the public notice and without the public review, is questionable. in stream lining we review this approval as part of an ongoing
effort to put more projects outsides of the purview of the public review. and the decision is fundamentally at odds with the traditions of the development in san francisco, and with the stated intent of the planning code which is to create the openness, transparency, and to foster harmony the construction along the property line and this is standard and encouraged by the design guidelines that the new rear yard additions be set back from the side property line, this is a remedy that has precedent and your board has used it and the planning department uses it frequently and thus, we are requesting you to follow the recommendation of five feet and we feel that it will enhance both properties. thank you for your time.
>> good evening, larrc, costelo and i am the conducting arborist, i have a phd. >> there was no time left. >> there was ten seconds left when he left. >> oh, we are done, okay. unless the board would like you to stay. >> i just have a question about the impact of the proposed or permitted garage. >> there are four trees in question and one of substantial size and a cypress >> this is one where there is time on rebuttal. >> okay, actually let me just hear it on rebuttal. >> okay. >> thanks. >> so we can hear from the permit holders now.
>> i am the architect actually, i do have 30 years of experience working in san francisco and i was actually the initial architect. >> sorry. >> ann fuseron and i have my card here too. and so, we designed the initial house, for the clients, who then came back to us because they had a larger family and wanted a little bit more space, and in the process of studying the feasible study for the potential of remodeling the house and doing the addition, it was clear to us that it was clear for the site having worked there before, that an addition that would be horizontal and would go up would probably block a lot of views and be quite disruptive to the neighborhood as well as to the existing house because you have to do a lot of work to the existing structure. and so, we suggested to them, that the easiest way might be to add the piece in the back,
and they have a steeply sloping site and so it would be underground but they had an existing courtyard that would bring it down and then we checked with planning and knew that it would be a garage and no way to access the back of lot and they were looking for an office/study and we called planning and directed to scott, the zoning administrator who proceeded to tell us that as we thought that we could use section 136 c26 and it does state garages but there is an interpretation allowed by the planninging code that allows other use and in this particular case, they felt that an office/study would be fine and we send them to david lindsey at scott sanchez asking and they were sent to david and he is the head quadrant of that district because they thought that it was special enough and he confirmed that we could do that and for this particular
jurisdiction we did not need a 311, so we did not need neighborhood notification or anything like that, but of course, he suggested that we should do out reach to the neighbors, which andrea and peter did do, they talked to the neighbors and talked to them about the plan and specifically this neighbor and showed them the drawings and which have not changed i will cory address the issue of it being too tall and we have drawings that were approved and shows the natural grade and how the addition is no more than 3 feet above grade and it is invisible to everybody and it is literally an underground room and i think that is mainly the two things that i would like to say, thank you. >> if you have any questions. >> i do. did you consider the five foot set back that is being raised. >> it was hard to do that because we also had the needs for exiting and there was also an existing patio, so really basically the building is not on their side, there is, you know, on their side there is a stair that comes up. >> it is their side.
>> there are two property lines. >> property line to property line, on one side, really we had to put in the staircase to be able to exit out and that is what they have on their side. >> yeah, it is hard to study five feet, it is a very skinny lot. in all of these cases these are all deep lots too, so the issue of being within 15 feet of the end of the lot is impossible, the lot is a very, very long lot as are all of the lots along that street. >> does this addition conform to the rear yard requirements. >> yes, it does, it requires the variances and was reviewed by david lindsey and they issued an over the counter permit because it did not require a 311 or anything of those things. and we have all of the e-mails and the rest of a few things. >> did you work with the arborist? >> yes, and we were told to go and get one and make sure that
there were no concerns, they hired their own and they have their own report that states that there should be no damage to the tree, particularly the cypress. >> okay, thank you. >> sure. >> thank you. >> and sorry? >> structural engineer for the project, in addition to all of the elements that were just discussed and the feature and of course we are going to be taking all of the precautions in regard to the excavation and the shoring and there are concerns by the appellant that our excavation will effect their patio and we have the report that describes the soil conditions and the top layer about that 21 inches of soil, and it was plantable soil and the rest is walk and so we will be able to remove the soft area on the top, condition and make sure that we analyze and review the roots of the trees that the parents are concerned about and
so are we, we are concerned about the health of those trees and we have retained the services of the arborist that will be on the site during the exposure of the roots that are encroaching on to the property and any of the premoval of those roots will be done in a manner that will be acceptable to the arborist and we will be happy to engage the appellant's arborist. and in regard to the additional excavation, and and the water proofing will be the top on the addendum but the package that will be reviewed to the dbi. >> thank you. >> how do you handle the drainage that is exterior to the structure? >> we have the permit water system and a membrane and it will have a series of drains,
below the slab that will be connected to a sump pump and it will be a permanent watering system and we will make sure that the walls are designed for the build up of the hydrostatic pressure and the drainage will be collected under the slab. >> on your property? >> correct. >> thank you, commissioners >> thank you. >> good evening, commissioners, cory tea gue, this is a rear addition to the existing building that is primarily below grade and it was approved by our department on october 8th of this year and it did not require 311 notification, because it did fall under a permitted rear yard structure under 136 c26 as mentioned the project sponsor did work cooperatively and proactively with the planning department early ono