Nevada County Develops Homeless Action Plan
Nevada County Health and Human Services Agency presented an updated draft Homeless Plan to the board of supervisors at the June 28 regular meeting. The Nevada County and Continuum of Care Joint Homelessness Action Plan was developed in collaboration with the Nevada County Continuum of Care (CoC), a regional planning body that includes local partners committed to coordinating housing and services funding for homeless families and individuals. It updates previous plans presented to the board and is the result of an in-depth review of local actions required to address homelessness.
Details of the plan include specific strategies and goals that Nevada County and the CoC will work on together to address homelessness in Nevada County over the next two years.
The plan is built on the county’s 2020 plan to address homelessness, includes key insights from 2020 to 2022, and identifies gaps in the current homeless response system in Nevada County. It was developed in accordance with state requirements for Homeless Housing, Assistance, and Prevention funding. Highlights include a landscape analysis describing the state of homelessness in Nevada County, including demographic information and information on subpopulations such as chronically homeless, youth between the ages of 18 and 24, and families, as well as a review of funding available to the CoC and the county to address homelessness.
The strategic goals of the plan for 2022 through 2025 include:
- Prevent homelessness through increasing availability of rental and mortgage assistance and expanding services for youth and families.
- Support and strengthen supportive services through outreach, engagement, and case management, which includes the development of a day services and navigation center, and strengthen housing focused case management and supportive services.
- Increase shelter capacity by expanding year-round shelter capacity and interim housing options.
- Increase affordable and supportive housing stock and implement a landlord liaison program that provides resources to landlords renting to individuals at risk of homelessness.
~ Nevada County Health and Human Services Agency press release
TDPUD Launches New Outage Management System
The Truckee Donner Public Utility District is unveiling a new outage management system, which will improve the timeliness and accuracy of outage communication with customers. A beta version of the new service launches Monday, July 11, and all current customers will be automatically enrolled if TDPUD has a valid email address and mobile number attached to their account.
With TDPUD’s new OMS, customers will receive text and email alerts when they are experiencing an electric outage, as well as estimated restoration time when available. By using machine learning and predictive analytics, the system can detect a power outage and only send alerts to the customers experiencing the outage. The system is also automated, so the initial outage alert will reach customers in almost real-time. Customers can expect to receive alerts to notify them of the outage if an estimated restoration time is established and when power has been restored.
Customers and the general public will also be able to view updates on the new TDPUD outage map, found at tdpud.org/outage. While OMS alerts will only go to TDPUD customers, anyone can check the online outage map for information if their power is out. The outage map is the best resource for visitors and residents who cannot receive OMS alerts, and will include information on which general areas are affected by the outage. During an extended outage, the emergency banner on the TDPUD website homepage (tdpud.org) will also be used to provide updates.
TDPUD has chosen to roll the new OMS out in a beta version, meaning it acknowledges it is an early version of the product that may still need some improvements. TDPUD hopes that through real-world usage and customer feedback, it can use the next few months to make the necessary upgrades to optimize the system. TDPUD customers can submit feedback by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
TDPUD is asking customers to log in to their TDPUD SmartHub account and verify that their contact information is up-to-date. Residents or visitors who are not TDPUD customers will not be able to receive OMS alerts, but can still sign up to receive Nixle emergency alerts by texting TDPUD to 333111.
~ TDPUD press release
Biomass Feasibility Study Update
Two of the Truckee town council’s identified priorities are to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and become a leader in environmental sustainability and to engage partnerships and investments to drive emergency preparedness. To support these important priorities, the town is investigating the feasibility of developing a biomass project in Truckee, which could produce renewable energy for town and partner facilities and help to dispose of the increased volume of green waste produced by Truckee’s increased fuel reduction efforts.
Locally disposed of green waste has more than doubled in the past three years, increasing from 100,000 cubic yards in 2018 to over 200,000 cubic yards in 2021. With the passage of Measure T, Truckee Fire Protection District’s fire tax, the volume is projected to increase as a result of proactive defensible space and forest management initiatives. Diverting green waste from the landfill can both save costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Once in a landfill, untreated green waste releases greenhouse gas emissions, including methane, which is approximately 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Treated disposal of green waste helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, in some cases can provide complete carbon sequestration, and can produce usable renewable energy to reduce reliance on fossil fuels.
In August 2021, the town, in partnership with Truckee Tahoe Airport District and Truckee Fire Protection District, began a scoping study to explore options to develop a biomass project to help power the three agencies’ neighboring facilities on Truckee Airport Road. Completed in June 2022, this study identified two possible options for a biomass project: biomass gasification power and combined heat and biochar. The final scoping study report is available here.
On June 14, the Truckee town council approved moving forward with a biomass feasibility study at a projected cost of $120,000 to consider the two identified options. Either option would provide benefits for green waste removal, as well as provide a specialized heat source or electric power to support a micro-grid for critical infrastructure. As a component of both options, the study will also consider producing biochar, which is a usable product and leading solution for carbon sequestration. The study will determine which option is the most feasible. If all goes well with the final analysis study, the partner agencies could begin the design and build phase for the selected option and the town and its partners could see a completed facility as early as 2024.
~ Town of Truckee enews: Talk From the Town, vol.16
Clarity Report for 2021: Past 20 Years of Data Indicate Evolving Threats for the Lake
The cobalt blue waters of Lake Tahoe were about as clear in 2021 as they were in 2020. But a broader look at clarity measurements shows there is no pattern of consistent clarity improvement over the past 20 years. The lake also has not fully recovered from a spike of fine particles that flowed into its waters after the extremely wet year of 2017.
That’s according to the data collected through 2021 by the University of California, Davis, Tahoe Environmental Research Center. UC Davis has measured clarity and other health indicators at Lake Tahoe since 1968, helping to inform policymakers and stakeholders on strategies to protect the lake and stabilize the decline in clarity that dates back to the region’s development boom in the 1960s.
Recent years have presented evolving and new threats to Lake Tahoe as climate warming, floods, droughts, and wildfires impact the lake in ways that are not fully understood.
Lake Tahoe’s average annual clarity in 2021 was 61 feet, compared to 63 feet in 2020. Summer measurements were 54.8 feet, while winter averages were 71.9 feet.
While clarity in winter months is invariably better than during the summer, the trend from the past two decades indicates that neither summer or winter clarity levels are improving over time.
Decades of research led to the development of the Lake Tahoe Total Maximum Daily Load, or TMDL, the science-based plan to restore the lake’s historic clarity. TMDL science identified fine particles and tiny algae as playing a large role in determining lake clarity. Currently, these are responsible for up to 70% of clarity loss.
Public and private investments in water quality improvements over the past 25 years have significantly reduced fine particles and algae-feeding nutrients entering LakeTahoe, and TMDL pollutant load reduction targets are being met. Schladow notes that some of the lake particle readings were likely influenced by smoke deposition from the past several years of wildfires that have blanketed the Basin. The precise role of wildfires on lake clarity and overall lake health is the subject of a Tahoe Science Advisory Council and multi-institutional study, the results of which are expected later this year.
The states of California and Nevada, which share a border at Lake Tahoe, are actively working to restore lake clarity to its historic 97.4 feet.
More than 80 organizations, including government agencies, nonprofits, and research institutions, are working collaboratively with scientists to improve Lake Tahoe’s water clarity and ecological health under the Lake Tahoe Environmental Improvement Program, which is one of the most comprehensive, landscape-scale restoration programs in the nation. EIP partners are helping meet TMDL reduction targets by reducing pollution through improved roadway maintenance and erosion control on roadways and private properties.
Science partners will continue to research climate and clarity changes in Lake Tahoe and to inform policymakers of strategies to restore the lake’s historic clarity. The Tahoe Science Advisory Council, an independent group of research institutions, including UC Davis TERC, also conducts an annual analysis of lake clarity. The council’s report on 2021 clarity conditions is available at tahoesciencecouncil.org.
~ UC Davis press release
Take a 2-Minute Survey on Foodware Policies
The Town of Truckee is seeking community feedback on recommended single-use foodware policies in a 2-minute survey on keeptruckeegreen.org.
Over 1 million tons of disposables — such as plastic forks, straws, take-out containers, and coffee cups — are landfilled in the United States each year. Keep Truckee Green, the Town of Truckee’s sustainability division, is drafting single-use foodware reduction policies to help reduce Truckee’s greenhouse gas footprint, reduce waste, combat litter, and address the organization’s sustainability initiatives.
Last December, the town formed a nine-person working group, consisting of business representatives, environmental activists, the general public, and town council representatives. The working group held six meetings to discuss the feasibility of the proposed policies, business challenges, technical support opportunities, implementation, and public outreach. The working group recommended the following three policies, which staff are now seeking feedback on:
- Ban the sale and distribution of expanded polystyrene (commonly known as Styrofoam)
- Require reusable foodware for in-house dining
- Require businesses to charge a fee on disposable foodware items require a discount for customers who bring their own reusable takeout food container.
The feedback from this survey will be integrated into the recommendations presented to Truckee’s town council on July 26. Staff is also seeking input from restaurants and businesses in industry-specific surveys. The surveys will be open through July 12.
Take the survey and learn more information at keeptruckeegreen.org.
~ Town of Truckee press release
Volunteers, Organizations Tackle Pollution on Land and Water for July 5 Cleanup
More than 300 volunteers, an eight-person dive team, and one beach-cleaning robot spread out across five Lake Tahoe beaches on July 5 in a collaborative effort to remove leftovers from July 4 celebrations, as part of the League to Save Lake Tahoe’s annual Keep Tahoe Red, White and Blue Beach Cleanup. In total, the teams removed 3,450 pounds of trash from the environment.
After multiple dives offshore of Nevada Beach in recent years, Clean Up the Lake’s team of divers were pleased by how little trash they found there. In 2021, as part of the group’s 72-ile cleanup, they removed 468 pounds of garbage from the site. On July 5, the divers found only 45 pounds. That outcome is the result of hard work and a coordinated effort to protect Tahoe’s environment.
Each July 5 since 2014, residents and visitors have picked up litter left in the sand while tabulating data on what they find and how much of it during the league’s annual cleanup event. The long-term dataset assembled from volunteers’ tallies shows a trend away from large heavy trash (coolers, lawn chairs, floaties), and toward smaller and lighter litter items — and many, many more of them. This year alone, volunteers removed 2,500 cigarette butts and 4,260 bits of plastic.Small pieces of litter can be hard to detect, especially if they’re buried in the sand. The BEBOT, an all-electric, beach-cleaning robot was brought to Tahoe through a partnership between the League and ECO-CLEAN Solutions to see if it can catch what may be missed. At Nevada Beach, the robot and several volunteers were assigned similar-sized areas of sand to clean. Volunteers found and removed 30 small litter items, while the BEBOT, sifting through the top few inches of sand, found 300.
Not every site followed the trend of smaller litter. At Zephyr Shoals, one of the League’s Tahoe Blue Crews arrived that morning to find the beach blanketed in trash. In total, a team of eight volunteers gathered over 2,700 pounds of cans, shoes, towels, beach chairs, and other assorted waste in a herculean effort.
~ League to Save Lake Tahoe press release
Flowbird: Downtown Parking District Update
The Town of Truckee has switched to the Flowbird parking app for parking payments in the downtown parking district. Flowbird allows drivers to pay for parking in three steps: select location, choose duration, and confirm payment. Flowbird has a number of benefits:
- Get fast and free access to the easy-to-use parking app.
- GPS is used to automatically identify where you are parked.
- Receive smart notifications during your parking sessions.
- Pay only for the actual parking time.
Visit flowbirdapp.com to download the app.
~ Town of Truckee enews: Talk From The Town, vol.16
Humane Society Offering Free Emergency Go-Bags for Pets
As wildfire season approaches, the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe is ensuring pets are as prepared as everyone else in case of an emergency. Thanks to a generous grant from the Dave & Cheryl Duffield Foundation, the HSTT will be handing out several hundred pet go bags for emergency purposes. The bags are intended to be ready for grab and go, and will include almost everything your pet will need in case of an evacuation emergency.
The Humane Society has bags for dogs and cats available. Each community member can receive one bag for free, but if residents have both cats and dogs, they can get one of each.Community members must show a local identification from one of the following communities to receive a bag: Truckee, Sierra County, all communities surrounding Lake Tahoe including Tahoe City, Kings Beach, Incline Village, and South Lake Tahoe (Zephyr Cove to Meyers), Homewood, Tahoma, etc. Bags will be available for pick up Monday through Friday from 1 to 6 p.m. beginning Thursday, July 7, in Truckee and Friday, July 15, in South Tahoe while supplies last.
The dog “go bags” include:
- Food bags (to fill with your own food)
- ID Tag
- Poop bags
- First aid kit
- Notepad and pen
- LED light
The cat “go bags” include:
- Food bag (to fill with your own food)
- Litter bag (to fill with your own litter)
- ID tag
- Litter scoop
- First Aid kit
- Notepad and pen
~ Humane Society of Truckee Tahoe press release
Moving In, Moving On, Moving Up
New Senior Director of Marketing at Palisades Tahoe
Palisades Tahoe has selected Matt Peterson as the senior director of marketing. Peterson most recently served as the regional director of marketing and brand for Woodward Mountain Centers in Tahoe and Park City. Prior to that, he served as the Vice president of marketing for Boreal Mountain. Peterson is known for his passion around creative marketing strategy, mountain culture, and environmental sustainability.Peterson’s appreciation for the mountains runs deep. He got his start in the ski industry as a professional snowboarder competing in the X-Games and filming with Warren Miller. His boots-on-the-board experiences led him to co-found Academy Snowboard Co., as well as a boutique creative agency in Denver before relocating to Lake Tahoe in 2013. Today, Peterson is an avid snowboarder, mountain biker, and backpacker who spends as much time in the Sierra with his wife and daughters as possible.
Over the past nine years, Peterson’s leadership has received multiple national awards, including NSAA’s Golden Eagle for the Recycled Water Project, Best Mobile Technology, and most recently Visit California’s Poppy Award for Best Recovery Campaign. Peterson also serves as executive chair for Visit California’s Mountain Committee, contributes to Ski California’s growth committee, and supports many community non-profit organizations.Peterson will start his new position on Monday, July 18.
~ Palisades Tahoe press release
DRI Appoints Vic Etyemezian as Vice President for Research
DRI is proud to announce the appointment of Vic Etyemezian, Ph.D., as the institution’s vice president for research, effective July 1. Etyemezian has served in an interim capacity since September of 2019.
Before being named interim vice president for research, Etyemezian was a senior faculty member in DRI’s Division of Atmospheric Sciences. He spent more than two decades working in dust emissions, air dispersion modeling, and data analysis. He has numerous peer-reviewed publications, a record of successfully pursuing intellectual property based on DRI research, and is well known and regarded within the dust research community. He holds a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University, a master’s degree from Johns Hopkins University, and a Bachelor of Science from the California Institute of Technology.
~ DRI press release
Boatworks Redevelopment Proposal
On June 9, MJD Capital Partners, owner of the Boatworks Mall — now Boatworks at Tahoe — and Tahoe City Inn (now The Inn at Boatworks), presented a redevelopment plan for the properties to Placer County’s North Tahoe Regional Advisory Council.
The presentation included an informational overview of a proposed mixed-use redevelopment project located on a 3.8-acre developed site located at 790 North Lake Blvd.. According to the NTRAC meeting minutes, MJD Capital seeks to “redevelop the site with an 80- to 85-unit hotel facing Lake Tahoe with conference facilities and associated amenities, 31 residential condominium units (branded with the hotel), and 8,000 square feet of commercial retail space fronting North Lake Boulevard. Existing structures onsite will be demolished prior to construction.”
The proposal presentation includes the land development process outline, status update, branding materials, an overview of the development team, renderings, and an overview of planned opportunities for public review and comment. The presentation can be found at the Placer County Public Meetings YouTube page.
Opportunities for public review and comment listed in the MJD Capital Partners presentation include:
Notice of preparation/ scoping — late summer/early fall 2022
- Two meetings (joint Placer County/Tahoe Regional Planning Agency)
Draft Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement — spring 2023
- NTRAC – no comment, but notice of release of DEIR
- Place County Planning Commission
- TRPA: advisory planning commission and governing board
Final EIR/EIS — summer/fall 2023
- NTRAC: action item
- Placer County Planning Commission
- TRPA: advisory planning commission and governing board
In response to multiple community members expressing frustration to Moonshine Ink that they weren’t made aware of community outreach regarding the Boatworks redevelopment, Vinton Hawkins, general counsel and project manager for MJD, and Marie Murphy, founder and CEO shared their perspectives.
“We can confidently say that over the past three years, Marie and I have met with countless Tahoe City residents and business owners multiple times, in particular with our immediate neighbors the Tahoe City Marina owners and Albertsons/Safeway Company so that we fully understood their concerns and, today, our plans reflect that collaboration,” Hawkins shared over email. “Moreover, we have met on several occasions with the Tahoe Fund, the League to Save Lake Tahoe, and the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation to gather their input. Perhaps most importantly, we have had numerous meetings with Placer County elected leaders and staff members as well as with TRPA board members and top staff. Naturally, we listened carefully to them and have adjusted our plans accordingly.”
Murphy aimed to clear public confusion: “I think the confusion is this: All of our discussions to date have been intimate and one-on-one with the businesses and community members or leaders we’ve been able to be in direct contact with. This is only because we’re still in such early stages for this type of project, so far from any actual major decisions or clear plans. That said, we are planning to have a more formal, open forum for public discussion and involvement; we’re simply not there yet. The community will be informed as soon as we have the plans and the foundation for what we’re even asking … It’s also worth noting that at our first unveiling at the NTRAC meeting, we discussed with clarity that the community will have no less than nine opportunities to attend public meetings and voice their opinions.”
~ KM, AH
Alpenglow Opens Winter Speaker Series Nonprofit Beneficiary Application Process
Alpenglow Sports is excited to announce that the Winter Speaker Series Nonprofit Beneficiary application process is open for the upcoming 2022/23 season. As beneficiaries of the 17th annual Winter Speaker Series, two nonprofit winners will receive between $75,000 and $100,000 of direct financial support for two years running.
For 17 years, the Alpenglow Sports Winter Speaker Series, presented by Tahoe Mountain Realty, has been an eagerly anticipated winter tradition for North Lake Tahoe and Truckee’s adventure community. With over 5,000 attendees annually, as well as a dynamic and global live stream component, the Alpenglow Winter Speaker Series has become one of the premier North American forums for adventure storytelling and community gathering. Five times each winter, a premier outdoor athlete presents an inspirational tale of adventure, creating a forum for motivation and inspiration. Past speakers of the Winter Speaker Series include Lynn Hill, Jeremy Jones, Tommy Caldwell, Emily Harrington, Cody Townsend, Alex Honnold, Adrian Ballinger, and more. Every show is free to the public and all ages are encouraged to attend.
Due to the global pandemic, the Winter Speaker Series moved to a highly successful virtual platform for the 2020/21 season. With nearly 10,000 views, the shows were enjoyed in nearly every U.S. state and over 30 countries. The following season, the series evolved into an in-person/livestream hybrid model that allowed local members to enjoy the original, in-person format they’ve come to know and love, while also allowing fans (new and old) to tune in from afar via the internet. It proved to be a change for the better, and one that is here to stay for the 2022-23 and all future seasons.
Giveaway and bar proceeds, in conjunction with anonymous donations by the Donor Party, traditionally raise more than $75,000 per show for a hand-picked, local nonprofit organization. Each chosen nonprofit receives a two-year run of support from the Winter Speaker Series. Each show is dedicated to a different local nonprofit and to date, the Winter Speaker Series has raised over $1,000,000. The result is a collective, community game-changing effort that has made a tangible difference in the fabric of the North Lake Tahoe and Truckee communities.
The Winter Speaker Series Nonprofit Selection Committee will accept applications for the two remaining nonprofit slots for the 2022/23 season between July 6 and July 25. From the end of July into early August, this committee will assess applications and narrow down the applicants to five nonprofit organizations that, if selected, will present (via Zoom) to the committee during scheduled time slots in late August/early September. Winners will be chosen and notified by the end of September.
Please email email@example.com for the 2022/23 Winter Speaker Series nonprofit application. Please note that any organization applying to become a Winter Speaker Series beneficiary must be a certified 501(c)(3) nonprofit in order to be eligible for selection.
~ Alpenglow Sports press release
Bike Racks For Businesses
The Lake Tahoe Bicycle Coalition launched the Regional Bicycle Parking Program in 2018. Since its inception, the program has resulted in nearly 500 bike racks (1,000 bike parking spots), and eight fix-it stations located on public lands and businesses in the Tahoe Basin.
LTBC now offers low or no-cost bike racks to interested businesses in Truckee, made possible through a grant from the Lahontan Community Foundation Fund held at the Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation. The program is designed to encourage locals and visitors to ride their bikes around lakeside communities instead of driving.
Studies out of UC Davis’ Sustainable Transportation Center have concluded that providing secure and proximate bicycle parking is a main factor in encouraging increased ridership.
LTBC launched the Regional Bicycle Parking Program in the Tahoe Basin to help implement Tahoe Regional Planning Agency and local plans, goals, and policies. The coalition began with a bike parking needs assessment conducted by TRPA with support from LTBC in 2016. A similar effort was undertaken in Truckee in 2015 with the Trails and Bikeways Master Plan. By increasing bicycle parking, the LTBC will help implement Truckee’s plans, goals, and policies, and increase bicycle ridership which would result in a reduction in air pollution.
Businesses interested in bike racks are invited to apply until July 31 online at tahoebike.org/bike-racks. The coalition is offering hoop runner or nverted-u style bike racks with bolt-down and free-standing versions available. Interested businesses will be selected by the bike coalition based on criteria that include their ability to provide matching funds, experienced or projected bike rack use, and community benefit based on surrounding businesses or services.
LTBC will be responsible for all orders, shipping, and delivery of the bike racks on behalf of the selected businesses, with deliveries expected in October and November of 2022.
~ LTBC press release
New Parking Rates at Reno-Tahoe International Airport
For the first time in more than 12 years, the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority is increasing the public parking rates at Reno-Tahoe International Airport . The need to expand parking at RNO has been well-documented in recent years as the airport has rebounded tremendously despite current challenges, seeing passenger levels that exceed pre-pandemic levels. The roughly $2-per-day increase will be implemented based on airport industry standards for airports of its size, with a third-party consultant as a guide on this change.
A record number of non-stop destinations (27-plus) and airlines (13) demonstrate the need for the airport to continue to invest in infrastructure. All money that comes from parking fees is invested right back into the airport to improve the full traveler experience, which includes parking offerings.
Remember to check RNO’s real-time parking availability tool at renoairport.com and arrive two hours before any flight. New parking rates went into effect on July 1.
~ Reno Tahoe Airport Authority press release
Après Après Fundraiser to Benefit the Diamond Peak Ski Education Foundation
The Diamond Peak Ski Education Foundation will host an intimate VIP fundraising event on the crystal blue shores of Lake Tahoe in Incline Village on Sunday, Aug. 28, from 3 to 7:30 p.m. The donor party of the season, Après Après will be filled with exquisite food and amazing local music.
Après Après provides a rare opportunity for 80 guests to experience an evening at one of Incline Village’s premier private lakefront properties, as longtime local philanthropist Kern Schumacher opens his private lakefront estate to support the DPSEF Ski Team.
Tickets are limited and will sell out. Regular tickets are $500 per person, VIP tickets are $1,500 per person; table buyouts and sponsorships are also available. Tickets and more information are available at apresapres.com.
The Diamond Peak Ski Education Foundation is a unique nonprofit that provides area youth with an exceptional community program to build strong character through the Diamond Peak Ski Team. More than 225 athletes, ages 5 to 99 and 50 coaches participate in DSPT’s ski program each season. DPSEF also awards needs-based scholarships to Incline Village/Crystal Bay youth to provide access to our ski programs.
~ Diamond Peak Ski Education press release