WJTV News Channel 12 - Tampa homeowner says Duke Energy is a bully for taking her oak t

Tampa homeowner says Duke Energy is a bully for taking her oak tree

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Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard.
Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard.
Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard.
Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard. Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard.
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

Neda Dandache and her family love their Tampa backyard oasis, even though a gigantic Duke Energy transmission tower abuts their backyard.  Oak trees block that view, for now, and give them shade.

The trees have never been an issue, but now, Duke wants them gone. Dandache says Duke's forester told her they may cause a problem - seven years from now.

"Take this out, what do we have?" Dandache asked. "A high voltage tower"

"It's been here for 25 or 30 years, and it has never been a problem. They were here just last year. How much could it have grown in a year?"

The trees are partly on her property, but are within Duke's transmission easement. That means Duke can trim the trees whenever they want - or just cut them down to make sure they're never a problem.

Dandache asked Duke if she could just pay to trim them herself, but Duke said no. Duke spokeswoman Kristin Perry said the company doesn't want to take out trees if it is not necessary.

"To ensure safe and reliable power, we have the responsibility to keep the right-of-ways clear and remove trees that have the potential of growing into or interfering with our power lines," she said in an email. "Our easement rights and policies dictate full clearance of all our right-of-ways in Florida, and we are consistent with this approach."

Duke plans to show up at her house next Monday, and they say they're leaving with the trees. But Dandache still can't accept that this is the only way.

"I told them, you're like a monster company. we obviously don't stand a chance," Dandache said. "I can't believe they won't compromise.

Copyright 2014 WFLA.  All rights reserved.

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