I am writing regarding the eucalyptus tree at 458 East L St. in Benicia which is next door to my house. I feel fear, concern and anguish about this hazardous tree. I have just paid my gardeners for the third time this spring to scoop up the leaves and debris that fall in horrific amounts from the oversized, enormous tree. It is completely inappropriate for a residential neighborhood and gets almost zero attention.
I have been told by the city of Benicia that this is an issue to be worked out between neighbors. That is difficult with an absentee landlord who does not respond to phone calls, messages or letters. I have tried to reach out many times and even offered to make a contribution to a professional tree trimmer.
The city issued me letters of warning in the past when I have had foot-tall grass or even a few items piled neatly to go to the dump in my alley. There may not be a law, but it is negligent on their part and the part of the landlord to ignore a tree of this size. Why do we have to wait ’till after a disaster to take action?
This past winter has seen many fallen and blown over trees in the Bay Area, including Benicia. I think a certain amount of general maintenance regarding this tree should be the bare minimum. If you could hear it creak and crack as the wind blows, you would have safety concerns as well. There is also a huge pile of bark, leaves and other stuff that comes off the tree that will be a fire hazard come summer because debris is left to accumulate. The landlord conveniently put no gutters on his roof, but I need mine cleared several times a year. After the recent storm, the street gutters were completely overrun and clogged with leaves and debris from this tree.
This is more than an eyesore. It is a threat to life and limb. I will hold the city of Benicia and the landlord accountable should this tree do damage to me or my property. I am reaching out to expand my query to Solano County, the local Fire Department and the local newspapers. I hope someone listens.
Counterfeit bills from local bank
I withdrew a significant amount of cash from the US Bank branch at the Raley’s Southampton Center in Benicia to make my mortgage payment. I immediately took the envelope with the cash they had given me down to Bank of the West on First Stree, to deposit the money. The staff at Bank of the West discovered that three of the $100 bills were probably counterfeit, and they confiscated the bills to send in to the authorities. In addition, I filed a police report. At the time, the US Bank branch manager assured me they would replace the money if it turned out they were counterfeit.
I have now heard back from Bank of the West, who told me the bills I received from US Bank were indeed counterfeit. Today, the US Bank branch manager told me they have no legal accountability to replace the money. In fact, I was told it was my responsibility to ensure the bank hadn’t issued me counterfeit funds. As far as they knew, I could have switched the cash with the counterfeit bills. In all my life as a mom, a grandmother, and an oncology nurse, I have never been accused of money laundering, and I’m so offended. Everyone, please be careful accepting cash from your local bank…once you leave the branch, you have accepted full responsibility for its authenticity!