It’s a little early, but it’s beginning to look like local election season. The city will have three seats up for election and the county will need a local replacement for Norma Santiago. While there have been no public declarations for those running for the city seats, competition for the county is shaping up. Those who have announced they are running include Ken Curtzwiler, Gerri Grego, Sue Novasel and Angela Swanson. While all will be running to improve the economy and to be able to work with the other supervisors in Placerville and have a vote on the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency board, I think there is another more important issue that each of these candidates need to consider and address: mental health. Simply put, we need more resources to deal with this incredibly challenging issue. No matter how well the economy works or whatever TRPA approves, as long as the mental health issue lacks the resources it needs, the community and economy will never really be healthy. So when these people run, ask them to specifically address how they will work to improve the situation.
What started as a simple idea to create more of a community vibe and upgrade Meyers for both local residents and visitors seems to have gotten off track. Though the community has participated for several years in developing a community plan, those efforts have gone sideways with the introduction of the catalyst project which would seek to dramatically change Meyers far beyond what everyone seems to want. It’s gotten the ire of locals to the point it risks impacting the overall program. Not sure who started this or sought the proposal or why, but it needs to be killed and focus returned to the development of the community plan. Doing nothing in Meyers would be a missed opportunity. This should not threaten those efforts.
The Big Picture
While I love Nevada as much as the next person, something is not adding up with their economic development strategy. According to the 2014 Tax Foundation Business Tax Climate ranking, Nevada is third. One would think that would translate into some pretty good investment and job creation right? But that’s not the case. According to the 2013 Gallup Job Creation Index, Nevada is ranked No. 32, right behind Louisiana. In contrast, Utah, the state with which Nevada is often compared, is ranked ninth in state business tax climate and 13th in job creation. Nevada has been running with this strategy for years, but it does not seem to be effective. Gov. Brian Sandoval and the Legislature need to consider a course change before the next elections. It’s not a pretty record to run on.
If you have not seen the movie or read the book, don’t miss “Lone Survivor.” The film is based on SEAL Team 10’s failed mission to capture and kill a Taliban leader during the war in Afghanistan. It is Marcus Lattrell’s (The Lone Survivor) homage to his friends and team mates who were lost on that fateful mission. It is a gripping and moving story of one Navy Seal’s effort to show us the courage and honor these men possessed. It is a story you should not miss. These Navy Seals are a very different breed, thankfully.
It’s a Wrap
It was great to see the South Shore Olympians do so well at the Sochi Olympics. Credit must be given to these young athletes, their families and all those supporters who have helped them along the way. If any kid in town is looking for inspiration, they need to look no further than Maddie Bowman, Jamie Anderson and Hannah Teter. Congratulations to all of them.
— Carl Ribaudo is a contributing columnist to the Tahoe Daily Tribune. He is also a consultant, speaker and writer who lives at the South Shore. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.