Hazardous Trees To Be Removed From Burn Area At Little To No Cost

A comprehensive program for removing hazardous trees in the Angora fire burn area was approved Tuesday by the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors.

Under the program, the removal of hazardous trees is available to all private property owners in the burn area at little or no cost.

In preparation for the tree removal, the county's environmental management department issued a request for informal bids from licensed timber operators. In response, Sierra Pacific Industries (SPI) offered a bid of zero to the county, with a not-to-exceed amount of $100,000 to cover any unforeseen, extraordinary costs.

Out of 10 bids received by the county, the SPI offer was nearly $1.1 million less than the next closest bid.

Initially the county made arrangements to fund tree removal from its reserve finances, and planned to seek reimbursement from state disaster assistance funds.

"The zero bid from SPI was quite a surprise and really changed our whole game plan," said Gerri Silva, director of county environmental management, in a press statement. "Now we can proceed without dipping into county reserve funds, while also providing the service to the property owners at the lowest possible cost."

In order for the county to make this program available at minimal cost, participating property owners must agree to waive the right to any residual value of the trees removed from their property.

Property owners may sign up for the hazardous tree removal program by completing a right-of-entry permit as well as a right-of-entry permit addendum. Both forms must be returned to the county environmental management department at 3368 Lake Tahoe Blvd., Suite 303, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150.

Homeowners who previously participated in the county's structural debris program need only complete and submit the right-of-entry addendum. Both forms are available at www.edcgov.us/angora and are due by 5 p.m. on Sept. 7.

Sierra Pacific Industries will begin hazardous tree removal work as early as Thursday. The project is expected to be complete by the end of September.