2020 Hillsborough Gas-Powered Leaf Blower Survey


As concerned Hillsborough residents, the goal of this survey is to:

(1) Quantify the amount of noise & air pollution being generated by gas-powered leaf blowers in general across Hillsborough

(2) Educate our community about gas-powered leaf blower ordinances in the Bay Area *and* provide a channel for concerned homeowners “to be heard" ... also learn about WHICH communities are allowing ONLY electric leaf blowers

(3) Create momentum & dialogue to prohibit gas-powered leaf blowers at all times/days and encourage electric leaf blowers to protect our Hillsborough quality of life

**** According to the California Air Resources Board, operating the best-selling commercial leaf blower for one hour emits smog-forming pollution comparable to driving a 2016 Toyota Camry about 1,100 miles, or approximately the distance from Los Angeles to Denver.
**** Several years ago, the Hillsborough city council declined to consider the banning of gas-powered leaf blowers due to a minority of vocal homeowners.
**** Our position is that the Town should consider an ordinance to either restrict or ban the use of gas-powered leaf blowers and potentially other landscaping equipment due to their high pollutant nature - air pollution *and* noise pollution.

Please take our survey to give us your opinions — and please share this survey with your landscaper, if you have one.

**** Per Hillsborough ordinance 8.32.030, gas-powered leaf blowers are ONLY permitted Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. Week-ends and holidays these are PROHIBITED.
**** To report ordinance violations, call Hillsborough police at 650-375-7470 and give approximate address (police may also require description of the vehicle and gardening personnel)


1A. Gas-powered leaf blowers cause both NOISE and AIR POLLUTION. What aspect of leaf blowers most concerns you? [pick one]

2A. ELECTRIC leaf blowers can perform the SAME TASKS as GAS-POWERED leaf blowers WITHOUT the use of FOSSIL FUEL. Would you be in favor of banning gas-powered leaf blowers if electric leaf blowers were mandated, or would you be in favor of banning all leaf blowers? [pick one]

3A. If NOISE is your concern, would you favor RESTRICTED DAYS OF OPERATION for leaf blowers in your neighborhood (similar to Burlingame's ordinance)?

4A. Are you aware that similar Bay Area communities such as Belvedere, Berkeley, Carmel, Los Altos, Los Gatos, Mill Valley, Palo Alto, Piedmont, Portola Valley, Saratoga and Tiburon have successfully BANNED GAS-POWERED LEAF BLOWERS?

5A. How many times per day on average are you aware of SIGNIFICANT NOISE from gas-powered leaf blowers affecting your Hillsborough household? [pick one]

6A. What are the most common TIME(s) OF DAY you experience significant LEAF BLOWER NOISE? [multiple choices = select all that apply]

7A. What are the most common HOUSEHOLD ACTIVITIES DISTURBED? [multiple choices = select all that apply]

8A. How many times per year has your family reported to Town of Hillsborough police illegal gas-powered leaf blower noise (illegal = outside of 8am-5pm Monday-Friday) [single choice]

9A. Have the Hillsborough police ever responded to your complaint about ILLEGAL gas-powered leaf blowers and SHUT DOWN the OFFENDING OPERATION?

10A. Which NEIGHBORHOOD or AREA do you live in? (needed to help pinpoint problem areas) [pick one of Hillsborough Neighborhood Network (HNN) neighborhoods]

11A. How much would you be willing to pay ONE-TIME to pay your gardener/landscape service to switch to ELECTRIC-POWERED LEAF BLOWER? Note that ~90% of Hillsborough employ weekly gardener services. Across our ~3,900 Hillsborough properties, there are an estimated 150+ unlicensed landscape/gardener services contractors working an average of 4-5 yards per day for 5 days per week = > 150 such trucks with one or more gas-powered leaf blowers per truck. If EACH homeowner stepped up and paid their weekly gardener $50 one time, each gardener would receive ~$1,000 which is sufficient for commercial grade electric leaf blower, plus extra batteries. This assumes they may be charging their spare batteries at your home while they are onsite (insignificant amount of electricity but possibly critical to their business model)

12A. Do you support the concept of one-time TRADE-IN program (similar to other Bay Area cities) for gardeners and homeowners to surrender their gas-powered leaf blowers and receive $150-$250 rebate from the town to purchase electric leaf-blower (must provide proof of purchase)? Estimated potential one-time cost to town of $20,000-$30,000 which can be used to effect the alternative equivalent of homeowners manually/directly paying their gardeners a modest $50-$100 one-time fee

13A. Do you support the concept of requiring all gardener services/landscape services to pay an annual $75-$150 business license fee? (currently architects, landscape architects and other professionals are required to be licensed; theoretically, *all* practicing businesses in town must be licensed but it apears 95% of gardeners are NOT licensed)

14A. How much do you pay your gardener/landscape service for "mow and blow” and/or general upkeep?

15A. How large is your property?

16A. Please share any OTHER IDEAS on how we might IMPROVE this survey or manage the issue of GAS-POWERED LEAF BLOWERS

Section B. ABOUT YOU

1B. CONTACT INFORMATION: If you wish to submit your response "anonymously" that is fine. All questions are "optional”.
However, if you choose to provide your name and address, then we can include that data as supporting documentation to our Hillsborough City Council as addendum.

If you would like a copy of the survey results
(which will *not* include the identifying names/addresses/phones), please include your email address below.

**** On behalf of our Hillsborough community, THANK YOU for taking the time to GET INVOLVED *and* SHARE YOUR DATA & OPINIONS ****

This survey is managed by the NO-MO-GAS-BLO grass roots organization of Hillsborough.


For more information on this issue and others that he is campaigning on, please see www.hillsborough-quality-of-life.com.

NOTE = Ballot stuffing does NOT work with this survey as we deduplicate based on your IP address ... therefore ONE survey per household maximum is permitted.

NOTE - If you have any technical difficulties after SUBMIT SURVEY button below:
(1) Please BACKPAGE to return to your submission data
(2) Use CONTROL/CMD-C to copy and CONTROL/CMD-V to paste into email
(3) Send to info@no-mo-gas-blo.com (use this email address)

**AFTER** you use the SUBMIT button, you will be redirected to a web page for POSITION PAPERS on this and other QUALITY OF LIFE topics.