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trickytransam

New Power Line - Possibly Cutting My 40' Spruce

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Well, I came home today and found a mysterious stake in the ground, which aligned with stakes going south down the road into the neighbors yards.

The stake read "Proposed Consumers Energy Power Line". At first I thought...Ok....they're running an underground power line.

Then...as I'm standing out in the yard, my neighbor comes over, and said that they're moving the entire line that feeds the neighborhood from the back of our houses (Where it is now) to the front.

Supposedly they are having a hard time servicing the line in the back of the yards.

Here's the problem.

Where the stake line runs - shaves the side of my 40' spruce. Consumers was moving the line away from the trees, and two of my neighbors trees will be removed for the new proposed power line.

Which means one of two things.

1. They are going to cut my beautiful spruce down

2. It will be too close to the power line for me to chance decorating it either by bucket truck or by ladder and extention pole.

The pole will be on the county right away on the property, so there isn't much legal say I have in it.

Should I call Consumers Energy and ask them to keep it further towards the road?

What would you do?

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What would you do?

Is there ANY chance they can place the new run UNDERGROUND?

Sounds like you have some "Old Growth" trees in the area and I would hate to have to see the power company going out in years to come to "trim" trees.

What do the neighbors think? If they would also like underground...maybe get together with them and petition the power company for some lattitude in this matter.

Doug

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The old growth trees were trimmed last year, and again a few years earlier.

A few years back, a 21 yr old tree trimmer lost his life - he rose himself up into the trees and leaned over the power line a few houses down from me.

Since then, they brought in a big crew and completely cut a clear sight line for the utility 30 feet on each side. so if you stand at the pole, you can look straight down.

So all of that has been cut and cleared.

They are not going to do underground due to cost. My pole on the back of my yard feeds 3 homes.

Their plan is to bring service in front of my house - then wrap it around the side of my house back to the existing pole.

So I'll have wires on 3 sides of my house, instead of one single run in the back.

Both neighbors are impartial because it doesn't affect them. The pole and wires for them stay in the same place.

I am the one that gets the additional wires around the house, and will loose a part of my landscaping that really adds to the value of my home.

Edited by trickytransam

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Time to talk to city council. The sweaky wheel gets the oil. Locally here, they have a "Local news" station that takes up causes like this and through news coverage tries to sway decisions like this.

Just a thought.

Doug

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Never hurts to ask. A few years ago, the county put in a forced sewer main. I asked them to avoid my Oak trees. They did and paid me for the easement.

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install an emptied waste oil tank in front of your tree or where their line is going to be. Throw in a couple of emptied 55 gallon drums for safe keeping. Your goal would be to create such an environmental hazard that the company would not dare dig a hole in your yard when they cut down the tree.

I know this sounds drastic (it was meant to be satire).

Seriously, find the engineer with the power company and BEG him to keep the lines 20 feet from your tree.

(and if that doesn't work, dig a trench in your yard and transplant some endangered fauna in your yard - better than creating a superfund site in your front yard).

The good news is that if your tree gets the axe, you can replant or use the space for a bigger mega tree.

edit: In all seriousness-the power company will have to conduct an environmental impact study on their project. Demand to see a copy of their study. If it doesn't address endangered species, bring it to their attention. Be sure they have a stormwater protection plan in place if the groundwater disturbance exceeds 1 acre.

Edited by Dale W

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Dont worry about it it will never happen. They have been talking about new meters and water meters here and it took them over 15 years to make the choice to do it and they keep talking about making the roads wider for 20 years but still every year they come out mark everything and nothing happens. I bet they have nothing better to do and just start making up things to do. I wouldnt worry about it right now if they do decide it would seriously surprise me but i dont see it happening anytime soon. I agree with everyone else though make some calls see what the deal is like you said possible line doesnt sound set in stoine to me...Sounds more like atleast look like your busy day :)

Edit: and every year we have ice storms and lose power for days b/c branches would break off and knock lines down. How long do you think it took them to come out and cut the branches away from the power lines? YEARS! and they are still not done and we lose power like clock work....Thats your tax dollars at work :) :::Here hold this stop and go sign for 88 dollars a hour::: "SURE!" well theres always one thing you can do is remove the stakes so they have to come back out and redo everything that will save ya some time and get mighty funny. They paint the grass white paint over it green :)

Edited by FrostNsnow

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I called consumers... waiting game at this point.

Waiting for a call from their planning department to voice my concerns.

My Township doesn't handle any power related concerns other than street lighting.

Unfortunately no mega trees will fit on my property - this Spruce was my mega tree.

More to come. Hoping for a positive outcome.

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If the pole sets on County ROW there is probably nothing you can do. However if any part of their line extends over the ROW onto your property they would have no rights for this. If Consumers is an investor owned utility your complaints will probably fall on deaf ears, however if they are a Cooperative (member owned) you have the right to address the board of directors if their bylaws permit it. You might ask the engineer to install a sidearm which would push the conductors away from you tree toward the road or ask them to install a taller pole.

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There is no way that tree is 40' ... still real nice ... maybe 25' ?

Well it takes a 16' extention ladder, with me 6' on the ladder and an additional 12' painters pole, plus a 12-15' decorators pole duct taped together to get close to the top. Last year i didn't decorate it because I ran out of stuff to tape together to get to the top...it grew some more.

Come measure it.

Edited by trickytransam

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