County Solicits Input on Achievable Housing at Nahas Property
Placer County held an open house on March 18 for public feedback and discussion on development plans for the 11.4-acre Dollar Hill property the county purchased last July with the hope of opening up achievable housing. Representatives from Related California and team members Pacific Companies and Dinsmore Sierra LLC presented guiding principles of the project, and various breakout stations captured community feedback on the development concept. The project, currently named Dollar Creek Crossing, is in the conceptual phase and community input is requested. The project plans to include a mix of for-sale and for-rent housing covering a wide range of affordability.
County Cuts Back on Second-Unit Restrictions
On March 26, the Nevada County Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance to incentivize the development and use of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) as a strategy to address the statewide affordable housing crisis and provide long-term housing for residents of Nevada County. With the recent ordinance, ADUs constructed after April 26 are prohibited as short-term rentals — with the exception of within the Town of Truckee; owner-occupancy requirements were removed allowing both units to be rentals; deferrals for road and sewer mitigation fees are available when the ADU is restricted for very-low or low-income individuals or under 800 square feet; wastewater disposal requirements are clarified; and the restriction of ADUs on parcels with employee housing has been removed.
Raley’s Lawsuit Dismissal Appealed
In January, a Nevada County judge dismissed the lawsuit filed by Stephanie Olivieri and Protect CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) against the Town of Truckee’s approval of the Raley’s development at Soaring Way. Olivieri said she and Protect CEQA have filed an appeal to the dismissal as of April 5. The lawsuit claimed a lack of affordable housing to be built concurrent with the project and an inadaquate environmental impact report, in violation of CEQA.
‘Affordable by Design’ Housing at Lake Tahoe
Tahoe Conservancy Partners will be pursuing an initiative to develop “affordable by design” housing on one of its developable properties in South Lake Tahoe. The Conservancy announced March 14 that it intends to enter into exclusive negotiations with Dinsmore Sierra, which will purchase the conservancy’s half-acre lot at 833 Emerald Bay Rd. in South Lake Tahoe, and finance and build housing on this parcel. The company intends to save costs by using small, simple, and repeatable building types. Dinsmore will meet the conservancy’s requirements to include a permanent easement for public access and open space by including such possible amenities as a bicycle path and a public bike repair station.
Land Trust Awarded Significant Forestry Grants
As wildfires become a greater and greater concern with each passing year, the Truckee Donner Land Trust is excited and grateful to be awarded $783,760 in funding for critical forestry work on its properties. Two grants — one totaling $364,510 for forestry work at Royal Gorge on Donner Summit, and another for $419,250 for work at Webber Lake — will allow the Land Trust to undertake significant forest health projects that will not only improve the local ecology on its protected lands, but also improve resiliency and help reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfires. Both projects will run from 2019 to 2021. This work builds on numerous other forest health projects completed across land trust properties in the past. These grants are among a total of $26 million awarded by Sierra Nevada Conservancy across the Sierra for wildfire, forest health, and watershed restoration.
Fat Ski-a-thon Raises $212,001 for High Fives Empowerment Fund
The 2019 Fat Ski-a-Thon in Vermont became the most successful fundraiser in Truckee-based nonprofit High Fives Foundation’s history, raising $212,001 for individuals and veterans with life-changing injuries in the organization’s Empowerment Fund. This fund recently granted $260,000 to 41 individuals and veterans via its January 2019 grant cycle and Military to the Mountains Program. The Fat Ski-a-Thon started in 2011 as an event for local Vermonters to spend a day skiing on “fat” skis at Sugarbush Resort, but it has transformed into a community event that welcomes all demographics.
Adventure Risk Challenge Launches New Scholarship Program
Adventure Risk Challenge is launching a scholarship-based program for high school youth in Tahoe/Truckee schools. The new ARC Community Leadership Program will provide leadership opportunities and academic support for students throughout their high school careers. Students who complete the multi-year leadership progression will be awarded a $1,000 college scholarship. The Community Leadership Program begins with a multi-week wilderness-based leadership and academic summer course in Tahoe, including backpacking, whitewater rafting, and rock climbing expeditions. The 2019 Community Leadership Program is accepting applications now until April 19. Info: adventureriskchallenge.org/apply
Meals on Wheels Receives New Car for Deliveries
Thanks to a generous grant from the Lahontan Community Foundation Fund, Sierra Senior Services, the local Meals on Wheels provider, has purchased an additional vehicle for their meal delivery fleet. An orange, 2016 Ford Escape SE was picked up by chairman of the board Jonn Melrose on March 8 and once registration is completed, will be out on the street delivering meals to at-risk seniors in the Truckee/North Lake Tahoe community. Sierra Senior Services maintains its vehicles and keeps them gassed and ready to go for the volunteer drivers to deliver over 32,000 meals each year. This car will replace the current vehicle with over 192,000 miles on it that is used for the Kings Beach route. This Ford Escape will seem practically new with only 21,000 miles.
TTD Launches ONE TAHOE Transportation-Based Website
The Tahoe Transportation District, in collaboration with agency partners, launched ONE TAHOE on March 11, an initiative focused on achieving the full funding necessary to transform the community transportation vision into reality. TTD has launched a new online resource available at onetahoe.org to introduce the initiative and invites the public to submit ideas and suggestions on ways to capture the complete funding needed to realize the long-awaited transportation system envisioned in community plans. The project webpage provides background information on this initiative and commences the first round of stakeholder outreach to develop a list of proposed funding solutions. Info: onetahoe.org
Transportation Plan Open for Public Comment
As part of the regional transportation planning process, the Nevada County Transportation Commission, in coordination with the County of Nevada, City of Grass Valley, City of Nevada City, and Town of Truckee, contracted with the consulting firm Fehr & Peers to prepare an Active Transportation Plan covering Nevada County. The plan combines previous bicycle and pedestrian planning efforts, evaluates needs, identifies projects, and recommends prioritization. Completion of the study will provide all necessary information and analysis required by the California Transportation Commission’s state funding guidelines and assist local agency efforts to secure grant funding for bicycle and pedestrian projects. The plan is available for review and comment through April 15. Info: nctc.ca.gov
Forest Service Moves Forward on Ladybug Forest Health Project
The U.S. Forest Service and Truckee River Watershed Council jointly hosted a public meeting on March 26 to discuss the proposed Ladybug Project. The wildfire resilience and forest health project would treat up to 3,000 acres east of Stampede Reservoir through forest thinning and biomass removal, mastication, and prescribed burning. In order to increase wildfire resilience, the project will emphasize fuels reduction, retain old growth and large trees, and improve overall forest health. Info: District Ranger Scott Conway, (530) 587-3558
Media Poll Finds CA Residents Ranked Environment as Top Issue
A recent media poll by Energy Upgrade California (EUC), found residents across the state ranked environmental issues, including water conservation and clean energy use, higher than other social issues. Key findings from the poll can be found below:
• 80 percent of residents in California are familiar with the state’s commitment to increase the use of clean energy across the state.
• 81 percent of residents support the shift California has made toward increasing the percentage of energy drawn from renewable sources.
• 72 percent of California residents report feeling a responsibility or social/civic obligation to engage in the environmental movement by managing their electricity use.
• 62 percent of California residents say that they try to switch their energy use to clean energy practices when they can.
Moving In, Moving Up, Moving On
Land Trust Welcomes New Development Director, Board Member
The Truckee Donner Land Trust is excited to announce Kate Frankfurt as its new development director, and Sidney Scott as a new board member. Frankfurt joins the land trust as the organization joins forces with Squaw Valley Public Service District on the acquisition of Olympic Meadow, a 30-acre property in the heart of Olympic Valley. Scott joins the board of directors in 2019 bringing a diverse background in the sciences and a personal passion for the region.
NTBA Welcomes New Community Relations Manager
NORTH LAKE TAHOE
Kerry Andras has joined the North Tahoe Business Association as its new community relations manager. He joined NTBA in March and replaces Ashley White, who had been with NTBA for two years. Andras has lived in the Tahoe area for 16 years and currently resides in Kings Beach with his wife and six-year-old daughter.