LAKE TAHOE — The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency’s Regional Plan Update took a step forward on Wednesday when the governing board affirmed recommendations to incorporate a package of revisions into a final plan.
Part of the package includes recommendations from a bi-state consultation group. Those recommendations took stakeholder input into account to address four major issues of discussion: delegation of authorities and the establishment of an appeals process; water quality; air quality; and land coverage questions.
“We recognize that no one got everything they wanted in the stakeholder process but all parties feel they were heard and that we’re moving closer to consensus than we ever have in the history of Regional Plan Update process,” said Clement Shute, Jr., chair of the RPU Committee and a member of the bi-state consultation group, in a TRPA press release.
In March, the Regional Plan Update Committee concluded six months of meetings, vetting policies before the environmental analysis was completed in April. A short list of issues remained that did not receive unanimous endorsement from the six- member committee, according to TRPA. Those more controversial issues — including environmental permitting safeguards, community character, numbers of building allocations and land coverage policies — were then taken up by the bi-state consultation group.
“I think what was so amazing was that in this small group of stakeholders there was a large sense that if compromise couldn’t be achieved here, it couldn’t be achieved anywhere, and it really put our feet to the fire,” said Claire Fortier, member of the Regional Plan Update Committee, the bi-state consultation group and the mayor of South Lake Tahoe, in the press release. “The process helped create more trust between the environmental community and local governments and created a base for ongoing conversations that have stymied progress in Tahoe for decades.”
The packet of recommendations moved forward Wednesday includes nine additional revisions to the Regional Plan and/or Code in response to public comments. Those revisions and the recommendations by the bi-state consultation group can be found online at trpa.org.
The Governing Board is slated to take final action on the Regional Plan Update in December.