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Newsletter

 

Welcome to Better Than Real Artificial Grass Newsletter section!. We will post important information regarding the artificial synthetic grass industry.

 

Now proudly serving you from three locations:


Our North Bay / San Rafael location is conveniently located at:


Better Than Real Artificial Grass Showroom and Warehouse.
771 Andersen Dr, San Rafael, CA 94901
- Mon - Fri 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
- Saturday 8:00 am - 2:00 pm

We have installations of artificial synthetic grass on display.
Ph: (415) 456-2169 Fax: (415) 485-9231
Email:
info@BetterThanRealGrass.com

 
Better Than Real Artificial Grass Showroom and Warehouse.

2741 Scott Blvd., Santa Clara, CA 95050

- Mon - Fri 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
- Saturday 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
We have artificial synthetic grass on display.

Ph: (408) 988-8907 Fax: (408) 988-8948
Email:
Southbay@BetterThanRealGrass.com

 

 NOW OPEN in the Midpeninsula.
Better Than Real Artificial Grass Showroom

851 California Dr, Burlingame, CA 94010

- Mon - Fri 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
- Saturday 8:00 am - 2:00 pm
We have artificial synthetic grass on display.

Ph: (650) 235-9575 Fax: (650) 235-9575
Email:
Burlingame@BetterThanRealGrass.com

CASH FOR GRASS PROGRAM

Contact your local Water District Office!. There are programs where rebates are being offered if you switch your grass area over to Artificial Synthetic Grass Turf or an alternative landscape. For more information and details see the links below.


Note: These links carry no such expressed or implied District endorsement of our products of any kind.

 

North Marin Water District (NMWD):  

999 Rush Creek Place

Novato, CA 94945

Phone #: (415) 897-4133

Fax #: (415) 892-8043

http://www.nmwd.com/conservation_exterior.php


Roseville Water Conservation Division:

2005 Hilltop Circle

Roseville, CA 95747

for general information:

http://www.roseville.ca.us/eu/water_utility/water_conservation/for_home/cash_for_grass/default.asp

For rebates application: http://www.roseville.ca.us/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=11503

For FAQ: http://www.roseville.ca.us/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp?BlobID=11202                     

 

Check with your local Water District Office about programs offering rebates if you replace your natural lawn with artificial synthetic grass.

 

 

 

NOTICE OF PROPOSED INCREASE IN WATER RATES

 

This is a notice sent to the homeowners from the MMWD in Marin County:

"This notice is to advise property owners and rate payers served by the Marin Municipal Water District of a proposed increase to the water rate and the bi-monthly service charge that would take effect on March 1st, 2010 and be reflected in bills with meter readings on or after May 1st, 2010. It also provides information about a public hearing on February 24th, 2010 at which written and oral public comments will be considered and a vote on the increase will be taken by the MMWD Board of Directors. Furthermore, it provides information about why MMWD needs to increase rates.

 Why is water rate increase being proposed? For MMWD to continue to fulfill its mission of providing clean, reliable water, both now and in the future, a rate increase is needed for the following reasons: 

 

- High Water Supply Costs:  

  • Sonoma County Water Agency (SCWA) is increasing the rate it charges MMWD by 15 – 18 % on July 1st, 2010. This increase follows a 20 % rate increase on July 1st, 2009. About 25 % of the water we use comes from SCWA. 
  • Essential water treatment and delivery needs, like electricity and chemicals have continued to increase in cost. 

  • Funding is needed for new water supply projects to increase the reliability of our supply during drought. These projects are Shafter Bridge pipeline, Alpine Lake pump replacement and Corte Madera pump station. 

 

- Declining Revenues:

Water consumption continues to drop. While this decrease helps our supply picture, it hurts our financial picture. We had planned for a 5 % reduction in water use due to conservation, but water use dropped 8.5 % in fiscal year 2008 – 2009, resulting in inadequate revenue to cover operating expenses. To complicate matters, most of the costs of providing water are fixed and do not fluctuate with the sale of water. Even so, we cut operating expenses by $5.3 million in 2009 – 2010 and will eliminate at least $2 million in 2010 –2011.

 

- Ongoing Financial Commitments:

  • We must continue to invest in our aging infrastructure, replacing pipelines and tanks, to continue to provide reliable water service.   
  • Our repair costs are higher because we have ramped up our efforts to reduce water loss through system leaks.   
  • We continue to fund water system projects to protect critical facilities against earthquake damage.   
  • We must maintain a certain reserve balance to comply with the debt coverage ratio in our bond covenants. 

     

 - Conservation Program Funding:

We must continue to fund water conservation programs, providing rebates and education, to minimize the need to finance additional, more expensive water supply projects.

 

 - Environmental Protection Program Funding:

We must comply with existing environmental regulations as well as new ones, including mercury remediation at Soulajule Reservoir, retrofitting diesel engines to protect air, and participating in a salmon recovery plan fir Lagunitas Creek.

 

 How will the proposed increase affect my water bill? The average customer’s bill will increase by 9.80 %, which is $4.05 per month or $8.10 per billing period."

 For questions regarding this proposed increase, feel free to call the MMWD customer Service Department at (415) 945-1400.

 

 

DROUGHT IN CALIFORNIA FORCES DRASTIC WATER CUTS & RESTRICTIONS

Bay area agencies have imposed a variety of measures to enforce water control. For example, property owners in some South Bay cities, are not allowed to irrigate to the point of runoff, and restaurants are barred from serving water unless requested.Many propositions are being discussed now, and so far, these are the restrictions already imposed in the Bay Area:

- Contra Costa Water District: Hosing down driveways banned in summer. Rates three times higher if customers using more than 1,000 gallons a day fail to cut use by 15 percent.

- East Bay Municipal Water District: Mandatory rationing of 15 percent. Drought surcharges, rate increases enacted.

- Marin municipal Water District: Considering desalination plant. Urging voluntary conservation to avoid mandatory rationing. Offering rebates up to $350 on irrigation equipment and other devices.

- San Francisco Public Utilities Commission: Promoting rainwater harvesting - collecting and reusing rainwater for non-drinking purposes like irrigation and toilets. Asking customers to cut water use by 10 percent.

- Santa Clara Valley Water Dsitrict: Mandatory rationing of 15 percent. Reservoirs are about 64 percent of capacity.

 

 

EPA: NO URGENT CONCERN OVER ARTIFICIAL SYNTHETIC FIELD SURFACES

In a long-awaited but limited report, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said yesterday that there was no cause for immediate concern from lead and other toxins in artificial-turf fields and playground surfaces made from recycled tires.

The EPA cautioned, however, that the 123-page study was too small to rule out potential health threats.

The report was triggered by controversy in New Jersey after the state Health Department reported in spring 2008 that it found elevated levels of lead dust coming from two aging fields in Newark and Hoboken. Since then, other states, including Connecticut, California, and New York, have conducted their own studies, as have various federal agencies. The studies focused on lead in the nylon grass fibers and the rubber tire crumbs that form the cushioning.

Results have been conflicting, and the studies have all had their own limitations. For example, the New Jersey study focused only on the artificial-turf fibers, but others dealt with the rubber crumbs - pulverized tires that rest between the blades and help them stand up. The Consumer Product Safety Commission said there were no risks, but the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised precautions for children using the fields.

Peter Grevatt, who oversees children's health issues at the EPA, said the agency would hold a meeting in the spring, possibly in May, to bring together officials from these states and the federal agencies to discuss what the next step should be.

Grevatt said the workshop would explore whether a more comprehensive study was warranted.

Air and surface samples for the EPA study released yesterday were taken from three athletic fields or complexes in North Carolina, Georgia, and Ohio, and from one playground in the Washington area. The testing was so limited, Grevatt said, that the agency was "not in a position to draw any conclusions on a national basis."

Between August and October last year, the EPA took air samples from about three feet above the surfaces - roughly the nose level of children - to determine the inhalation risk. The agency also collected samples wiped from the turf blades.

All samples came back at levels within acceptable standards, Grevatt said, but testing was not done for all toxins.

The tires might contain arsenic, cadmium, chromium, manganese, mercury, lead, benzene, latex, and other compounds. Some of elements are carcinogenic and some can cause brain dysfunction.

Suzanne Wuerthele, a retired toxicologist with the EPA's Denver office who alerted the agency to the potential health threats about two years ago, said the agency should have sampled a representative number of fields that use the different types of tires before issuing any findings.

"They pay lip service up front to the limitations to the study and then come to their conclusions and say, 'Don't worry, we have no problems right now.' They shouldn't give the wrong impression," Wuerthele said.

Jeff Ruch, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, said he too was disappointed with the EPA study. "We still call on the EPA to remove their endorsement since they say they don't have information one way or another to say it's safe," Ruch said, referring to the EPA's endorsement of rubber crumb surfaces because they break falls and lessen sports injuries. "Given that they say preventing childhood exposures [to toxins] is a top priority, their response to the findings of potential exposures shouldn't be, 'Let's have a meeting.' "

Shira Miller, spokeswoman for the Synthetic Turf Council, which represents the industry, saw the EPA's announcement as positive. "The EPA said there's low levels of concerns, and we are glad it reaffirms all the other information coming out this year," she said. "There have been really major positive developments affirming the safety of synthetic turf this year."

More than 5,000 turf fields are installed nationwide, and most have rubber-tire cushioning, according to the council.

Other findings noted in the EPA report were that no tire-related fibers were observed in the air samples, and that more than 90 percent of the lead in the tire-crumb material was tightly bound and could not be absorbed by the body.

Source: Philadelphia Inquirer, 12/11/2009

 

 

HIGH SCHOOL PRINCIPAL SEEKS ARTIFICIAL SYNTHETIC GRASS FOR HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETIC FIELD

On a rainy morning after a soccer game the previous night, the Oviedo High School athletic field looks more like a war zone than a beautiful grass playing field. Grass is torn up from cleats, puddles are forming in the low areas - a lot of work must be done before the school's next home game.

Next season, this could all be different if Oviedo High Principal Robert Lundquist has his way.

Lundquist, along with athletic director and head football coach Wes Allen, is at the forefront of the efforts to install an artificial synthetic turf field in place of the existing natural grass.

"Because of the strain and wear and tear on our athletic field, there is no human way in which we can keep our field in a playable condition for our athletes and anyone who wants to use the field," Lundquist said.

More than 10 athletic teams use the school's main field, as well as the marching band and JROTC students. It is also used as a site for Pop Warner football games on Saturdays, leaving little to no time for the field to recover from being used.

A similar plan was considered three years ago, but, at that time, the cost to install artificial synthetic turf was too much, Lundquist said.

"Because this is what we feel like is a wonderful time because of the economy, that might sound odd, but because of the depressed economy, the businesses and groups that sell artificial synthetic turf to schools, they are offering their artificial turf and their surfaces at a reduced price," Lundquist said.

Currently, athletic director Wes Allen is researching the options available to the school to determine which type of artificial synthetic turf they can afford. The goal is to get the best quality artificial synthetic turf they can afford in their price range, Allen said.

Lundquist said they are still in the process of determining how much money they will need, but said it will be funded by a loan taken out by the Athletic Boosters, which will be paid back monthly over the next few years.

"This will be a self-funded Oviedo High School endeavor," he said. "But we are asking for our community to help us."

Lundquist and the athletics department are considering several ways to help raise money for the field, including a plan to have local businesses "own" a square of the field, with a permanent sign designating so.

The project would be a major investment for the school, as an artificial synthetic  turf field is guaranteed to last 8-10 years, but usually lasts much longer than that, Allen said.

Perhaps the biggest question regarding the artificial synthetic turf field is the safety of the athletes. Turf is historically known for causing more injuries than natural grass, but Lundquist said the technology has come a long way.

"Before there were questions about injuries with an artificial synthetic surface, that's not the case anymore," he said. "Some of the finest facilities [and] stadiums in America are going to artificial synthetic turf fields, primarily you look at the Dallas Cowboy's new stadium, the New Orleans Saints' Superdome, both of those use the same kind of artificial synthetic turf that we are looking at."

Lundquist said that the new field is a more practical option, both in maintenance costs, and the elimination of the water and pesticides and fertilizers used on the current field.

And besides the practicality of an artificial synthetic turf field, there is the aesthetic appeal of a field that never dies.

Because of its prominent location within Oviedo, Lundquist said the front athletic field "should be a showpiece" within the community.

"Many people look at it as just being a football field, but it is more than that," Lundquist said. "We want everyone to be very proud of our field."

Source: Seminole Chronicle, 12/09/2009 

 

 

THE CITY OF BELMONT, CALIFORNIA IS LOOKING FOR $2.3 MILLION FOR ARTIFICIAL SYNTHETIC TURF AT SPORTS COMPLEX

BELMONT — The city is looking to become the latest Peninsula community to install artificisl synthetic turf to give sports teams more time to play, although planners may have to rely on the state to fund the project.

Parks and Recreation officials said Monday they could install artificial synthetic turf at the 4-acre north field at the Belmont Sports Complex for $2.3 million. They say the artificial grass would save the city about $1.5 million in maintenance costs over 10 years and give baseball and soccer teams an extra 40 percent of playing time at the city's largest field.

No one knows yet how to pay for the project. In addition to more traditional fundraising methods such as private donations, the city may seek naming rights to the field or sell ads on a digital billboard. Officials may also tap into a developer's fund earmarked for park projects; they haven't yet approached sports groups to ask for higher fees.

Park and Recreation staffers say their best bet could be the state. Officials expect to apply for a $1.8 million grant from California State Parks early next year and will not know the results until September.

The biggest advantage of artificial synthetic fields may be its potential for expanded use. Currently, the city schedules 2,292 hours of play on the field each year and closes it from mid-January through the end of March, said Recreation Division Manager George Brunson. The turf would allow the city to keep the field open year-round and schedule an extra 972 to 1,392 hours of use, he said.

 "And a good artificial synthetic turf field can be wonderful in terms of what it can allow the kids to do," said City Councilman Warren Lieberman, who has spent years as a local sports coach. "I know from experience 10- or 11-year-olds love playing on artificial synthetic turf, and they love playing on it more than playing on grass with the goose poop."

Parks and Recreation Director Jonathan Gervais said the field sits on Bay mud soils, which get salty, and last year it required 4.5 million gallons of water and $118,000 in upkeep costs. Artificial synthetic turf, by comparison, would cost the city just $3,000 per year to maintain, he said.

"The field is a maintenance nightmare," Gervais said.

Several Peninsula cities have already welcomed artificial synthetic turf with open arms, seeing it as a way to expand sports use without using more land. But it has polarized San Carlos, where officials spent about a decade debating the topic and plan to install the artificial synthetic turf soon despite a lawsuit that a group of residents filed against the city earlier this year.

"I'm sure there may be opposition to it (in Belmont), but I don't see the type of opposition that San Carlos had," said Brunson, citing the availability of parking and lack of homes around the Belmont Sports Complex.

There have been other concerns associated with artificial synthetic turf, however, including injuries, health issues and overheating. Gervais said the city would not use crumb rubber made from tires in its turf, which should address health and overheating questions raised in some research.

Lieberman said he doesn't think the turf would pose an injury risk to children.

Source: The Mercury News, 11/30/2009

 

Better Than Real Artificial Grass upcoming projects:

East Francisco Blvd, San Rafael - Cerro Sonoma Circle, Petaluma - San Pedro Rd, San Rafael - Northstar, Petaluma - Los Ranchitos, San Rafael - Sartori Ct, Petaluma - Deer Valley, San Rafael - Casa Grande Rd, Petaluma - Lincoln Ave, San Rafael - Petaluma Blvd, Petaluma - Rancho Bonito, Petaluma

 

Better Than Real Artificial Grass artificial grass offers installation and distribution services of artificial synthetic grass turf & sod  in these locations (contact the office for location availability):

ALAMEDA COUNTY: Alameda - Albany - Berkeley - Dublin - Emeryville - Fremont - Hayward - Livermore - Newark - Oakland - Piedmont - Pleasanton -  San Leandro - San Lorenzo - Union City. CONTRA COSTA COUNTY: Antioch - Brentwood - Clayton - Concord - Danville - El Cerrito - El Sobrante - Hercules - Lafayette - Martinez - Moraga - Oakley - Orinda - Pinole - Pittsburg - Pleasant Hill - Richmond - San Pablo - San Ramon - Walnut Creek. MARIN COUNTY: Belvedere - Bodega Bay - Bolinas - Corte Madera Fairfax - Forest Knolls - Greenbrae - Ignacio - Inverness - Kentfield - Lagunitas - Larkspur - Marin City - Marinwood - Mill Valley - Nicasio - Novato - Point Reyes - Ross - San Anselmo - San Geronimo - San Rafael - Sausalito - Sleepy Hollow - Stinson Beach - Terra Linda - Tiburon - Tomales Bay - Woodacre. NAPA COUNTY: American Canyon - Calistoga - Napa - St Helena - Yountville. SAN FRANCISCO CITY & COUNTY. SAN MATEO COUNTY: Atherton - Belmont - Brisbane - Burlingame - Colma - Daly City - East Palo Alto - Foster City - Half Moon Bay - Hayward - Hillsborough - Menlo Park - Milbrae - Pacifica - Portola Valley - Redwood City - San Bruno - San Carlos-  San Mateo - South San Francisco - Woodside. SANTA CLARA COUNTY: Campbell - Cupertino - Gilroy - Las Altos - Los Altos Hills - Los Gatos - Milpitas - Monte Sereno - Morgan Hill - Mountain View - Palo Alto - San Jose - Santa Clara - Saratoga - Sunnyvale. SOLANO COUNTY: Benicia - Dixon - Fairfield - Rio Vista - Suisun City - Vacaville - Vallejo. SONOMA COUNTY: Cotati - Petaluma - Rohnert Park - Sebastopol - Santa Rosa - Sonoma. Other cities: Bakersfield - Chico - Eureka - Fresno - San Francisco - Redding - Sacramento - Salinas - Stockton - BAY AREA - EAST BAY - NORTH BAY, NORTH CALIFORNIA

 

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