By now you're aware of the Sierra Club's frivolous lawsuit on the Regional Plan Update. We cannot afford to let litigation stand in the way of our future. The thousands of citizens who participated in the collaborative process deserve and, in fact, demand that we implement plans for a sustainable environment, community and economy. Gone are the days where this elitist Nimby approach to environmentalism is going to be tolerated. Each of us who lives in the basin loves it for the same reasons, and none I've met wish to degrade lake quality or the surrounding beauty. But all I've met desire to earn a decent standard of living while protecting their surroundings.
I, for one, am interested in learning more about the interests of the select few who filed this lawsuit. Why are they opposed to collaborating? Why are they opposed to the adaptive management process that requires continual improvements? Could it be that they live in glass houses?
In the spirit of working on behalf of local businesses (small, medium and large) the Board for Tahoe Chamber remains committed to working collaboratively with all partners towards economic revitalization with respect for the environment. We have made significant headway as a community and we must stay focused and optimistic about our future. We must continue to gather and share our opinions respectfully in order to achieve compromises as was done through the RPU process. Compromises allow us to move forward as opposed to litigation that selfishly intends to halt progress.
As the recession gradually recedes there will be other tourism destinations earning a greater share of the market. Those communities will have better public safety, parks, bike paths, schools, senior centers and infrastructure. If someone is going to get that why not us? Let's work together to claim our slice of the pie rather than infighting while other communities lay claim to our share as they have done over the past two decades.
There have been significant improvements recently such as the completion of Lakeview Commons and the installation of Wayfinding signs, sidewalks and lighting along Highway 50. More is to come if we join forces and stand up to the elitist few who wish to derail our community in order to preserve their stake. If you are interested in engaging in our future, I urge you to attend a free forum at Embassy Suites on Tuesday, March 5, from 5-8 p.m. The forum will help us get a better picture of the bigger picture so that we can collaborate towards economic revitalization.
At the forum, you will hear short presentations by representatives from each jurisdiction highlighting their "Area Plans" that will guide redevelopment within their respective borders. Attendees will also hear from education, health care, business and transportation representatives. evening will follow a TED-style format, rather than a PowerPoint presentation so you can expect photographs, diagrams and dialogue on what the South Shore future could look like.
- Betty "B" Gorman, J.D., B.S., A.C.E., is the president and CEO of TahoeChamber.