Greasing the Wheels to Revive Urban Oil Fields

Sep 19, 2012 Full story: www.latimes.com 7

As rising crude prices make old fields now surrounded by homes economically viable again, oil companies are making many concessions with local officials to revive them.

Drillers looking to revive old urban oil fields find themselves surrounded by homes and businesses that weren't there way back when, and the companies are negotiating increasingly complex agreements with neighbors and local officials on rules governing aesthetics, noise, hours of operation and much more.

Fracking has gotten such bad publicity of late that a bill to regulate the controversial extraction method was introduced in the state Legislature. It was shelved last month but could be reintroduced during the next legislative session.

Lawsuits had been filed by several community advocates and environmentalists who argued, among other things, that the county failed to produce an adequate environmental impact report before allowing Plains Exploration & Production Co. of Houston to drill on land near Baldwin Hills. The settlement established limits on the numbers of wells, where they can be drilled and noise levels. The pact set landscaping rules, required periodic health assessments of nearby residents and increased the amount of air-quality monitoring.

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“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#1 Sep 19, 2012
Sound familiar?

This puts the would-be developer's (of the last open space hills in Montebello) baksheesh spreading tactics into context. Their many 'donations' to apparently try to get some support for their condo project by residents can now be seen for what they are: using a tiny fraction of oil revenues from the Hills to get residents to change their opposition to dangerous development in their city.

You will notice that a "more typical 20% to 30%" of (gross?, net?) oil revenues is what other cities are apparently getting for their oil production. I believe that Montebello only is getting a fraction of that.

No wonder the would-be developer appears to have a fountain of money available to try to get their dangerous development done. They are reportedly spending thousands to try for a billion. How generous! It appears that they have given less philanthropically than they spend to send and distribute their advertising all over the city.

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#2 Sep 19, 2012
The recent Concerts in the Park illustrate the resentment their efforts engender in ordinary Montebello residents.

First, the would-be developer announced that they would not be funding the popular concerts. Then, the July 9 Montebello Oilfield Fire happened, a publicity disaster for Condos in the Hills, and a few weeks later the developer did an about face, announcing at a city council meeting that they would, after all, be funding the concerts that would start in two weeks.

It turns out that they were doing it on the cheap, again. The would-be developer refused to pay for the bands, apparently forcing the city to do questionable (possibly illegal) last second fund raising to get some money for the bands. Reportedly, many families turned around when they saw a "$1 Donation" sign at the entrance and a phalanx of collectors on each side of the entrance. Some then entered when members of the Save the Montebello Hills Task Force told them that they didn't have to pay anything to go in. No one from the would-be developer or city would do that for those people.

At the concerts, the developer was apparently so dispirited by the crowd's lack of enthusiasm that they reportedly attempted to buy support for their wildly unpopular proposed development with a "free" raffle ticket if anyone would sign up as "supporters" of the development. I don't blame them, as some events end with the developer getting only a handful of "supporters" sign ups. The alleged developer was in such a hurry to leave some concerts that they were told by the rangers that they couldn't park their vehicles to load up their chachkis by the entrance while the concerts were still going on.

Many residents only heard about the concerts when they saw them as they drove down Whittier and Olympic past them. Many seemed to be cynical about the condo developer's fast turn around, saying that they saw it as a cheap effort to get some good publicity after the 5-alarm oil field fire.
Trash Talk

Los Angeles, CA

#3 Sep 19, 2012
Baldwin Hills formed a Community Services District to regulate the PXP Oil Field.
Montebello Must do the same.
Also time for that New general Plan and the matching Zoneing.
Hillside development regulations BEFORE consideration of any circumventing "Specific Plans".
Montebello's Planning and Economic development, and Code enforcement staff has been decimated and is under lot's of competing pressures.
Get them some help.
Montebello Historian

Montebello, CA

#4 Sep 19, 2012
42 yr North Mtb resident wrote:
The recent Concerts in the Park illustrate the resentment their efforts engender in ordinary Montebello residents.
First, the would-be developer announced that they would not be funding the popular concerts. Then, the July 9 Montebello Oilfield Fire happened, a publicity disaster for Condos in the Hills, and a few weeks later the developer did an about face, announcing at a city council meeting that they would, after all, be funding the concerts that would start in two weeks.
It turns out that they were doing it on the cheap, again. The would-be developer refused to pay for the bands, apparently forcing the city to do questionable (possibly illegal) last second fund raising to get some money for the bands. Reportedly, many families turned around when they saw a "$1 Donation" sign at the entrance and a phalanx of collectors on each side of the entrance. Some then entered when members of the Save the Montebello Hills Task Force told them that they didn't have to pay anything to go in. No one from the would-be developer or city would do that for those people.
At the concerts, the developer was apparently so dispirited by the crowd's lack of enthusiasm that they reportedly attempted to buy support for their wildly unpopular proposed development with a "free" raffle ticket if anyone would sign up as "supporters" of the development. I don't blame them, as some events end with the developer getting only a handful of "supporters" sign ups. The alleged developer was in such a hurry to leave some concerts that they were told by the rangers that they couldn't park their vehicles to load up their chachkis by the entrance while the concerts were still going on.
Many residents only heard about the concerts when they saw them as they drove down Whittier and Olympic past them. Many seemed to be cynical about the condo developer's fast turn around, saying that they saw it as a cheap effort to get some good publicity after the 5-alarm oil field fire.
"Tchotchkes"?

“Hilltop Park Above All”

Since: Sep 08

Montebello, CA

#5 Sep 19, 2012
Montebello Historian wrote:
<quoted text>
"Tchotchkes"?
Oy gevalt! Yes.
Wonder Why

United States

#6 Sep 20, 2012
The active oil field in the Montebello Hills is located on hills which are at a higher elevation than the nearby residential neighborhoods. The noise and smells from the oil production rise and are not detected by current residents. If the proposed high density condo development were built on top of the oilfield, as the would be developer proposes, the new residents would experience the noise, smells and vibrations that accompany oil production. How long would it be before those new residents complained?
Montebello Historian

Montebello, CA

#7 Sep 20, 2012
42 yr North Mtb resident wrote:
<quoted text>Oy gevalt! Yes.
Zay moykhl?

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