Post Office rejects landscaping help

The barren land in front of the Chino Hills Post Office has long been a sticking point in the community because of weeds, unkempt shrubbery and trees. The Post Office responds by removing the weeds when they’re tall enough to attract attention, leaving a stark landscape.

The uncultivated land in front of the Chino Hills Post Office on Peyton Drive isn’t going to get beautified anytime soon.

The condition of the parkway and surrounding areas has been a point of contention by community members and the city council for several years.

The property goes through a continuous cycle of weeds, unkempt shrubbery and trees before complaints trickle in, the weeds are cut, the land remains desolate, and the cycle starts all over again.

The United States Post Office (USPS), which has federal jurisdiction over the facility, has rejected the community’s offer to install a major beautification project, including irrigation improvements. 

Chino Hills Scout Troop 220 was exploring a plan to update the landscape as a combination Eagle Scout/community collaboration project, according to Suzanne Vliestra who was leading the effort with the Twelve Points Foundation, the troop’s non-profit charter organization. 

“Business volunteers were ready to donate pest control, irrigation repair, plant materials, hardscape, and know-how to help the Scouts beautify and maintain the Chino Hills Post Office landscaping at no cost to taxpayers or the USPS,” Ms. Vliestra said. “But we were told by the Chino Hills Postmaster that his superiors would not allow it.” 

Evelina Ramirez, USPS spokesperson, said the area near the entrance to the Chino Hills Post Office is not irrigated and will not sustain greenery. 

“While we appreciate offers from the community, we are unable to accept any gifts or labor in kind from our customers,” Ms. Ramirez said. 

She said the Post Office maintains the area and clears it of weeds and debris. 

“We will double our efforts to keep the area clean and presentable,” she said, a promise she has made to the community on more than one occasion.

Chino Hills Councilman Ray Marquez, who approached Ms. Vliestra with the suggestion to beautify the area, said things were moving forward until the USPS stated it didn’t want the help. 

Mr. Marquez said the Postmaster was willing but the decision was out of his hands.

“The post office landscaping looks like a scorched-earth moonscape,” Ms. Vliestra said. “What a shame that willing volunteers aren’t allowed to beautify such an eyesore in the middle of Chino Hills.”

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