Accusations made towards IVGID trustees

Community rallies around GM after rumors fly he could be terminated

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — It was a heated general improvement district Board of Trustees meeting on Wednesday evening with dozens of community members rallying around General Manager Indra Winquest, after rumors began to spread that his job was in jeopardy. 

Community leaders and previous board members gathered to speak about, not only Winquest’s character and his service to the district, but also the actions that have been taken by the majority of the board this year that have resulted in disappointment among the community. 

Those who spoke at public comment, which lasted almost two hours, included former trustees Kendra Wong and Tim Callicrate, along with North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District Chief Ryan Sommers, former IVGID Trustee candidate Gail Krolick, and local resident Carolyn Usinger, who picks up trash in the basin. 

“Having known Mr. Winquest since his days at the rec center counter 20 years ago through his subsequent promotions, and then as a general manager,” said Callicrate, “Mr. Winquest has proven to be an honest, hard-working individual whose depth of knowledge of the district and it’s operations are second to none.” 

Callicrate voiced the concern of many following his defense of Winquest. 

“I’m deeply concerned about the direction the majority of this board is taking this district,” said Callicrate. 

Some community members are so concerned with the direction of the board, they threw around the idea of a recall of certain board members. Accusations that were made included that the board is micro-managing staff and allowing for abuse of staff during public comments by disgruntled community members. Some even went so far as to say that the trustees are creating a toxic work environment for IVGID staff and Winquest himself.

Since the general manager evaluation was taken off the agenda for this meeting, there wasn’t a chance for the board to discuss plans for Winquest, who thanked the public, but could not comment on much else. 

“I’d think I’d be remiss to not just say thank you to the members of the community that came out to support me,” said Winquest. “It’s been a humbling opportunity to serve the community for the last 20 years, so I do appreciate that.” 

Following the comments made by the community, the board jumped into discussion, choosing to table the conversation about year-round beach access to the next meeting in order for staff to bring a full scope of information about the project. 

The consent calendar was passed through in its entirety, with the item about additional recreation pass sales moved to general business for further discussion. 

It was explained to the board that with the elimination of the recreation tax the last meeting on Wednesday, May 25, there was an inability for non-beach access residents to buy additional recreation passes, previously known as picture passes. 

The board was able to approve the sale of additional recreation passes to non-beach residents at $91 a person, a fifth of the total beach fee. 

Trustee Ray Tulloch suggested during the conversation to eliminate the option to expand the life of a recreation pass by six months, one year, or five years, and instead have them expire yearly as punch cards do, which could be discussed when Ordinance 7 is revised by the board. 

After holding the public hearing period for the water and sewer rate amendments, the board voted 4-1 to raise rates, which will see a one year average increase of 8% in customer’s water utility rate, and an increase of around 13.2% in their sewer utility rate. 

“I think we’ve got the right rates, said Trustee David Noble. 

Tulloch disagreed, voting against the rates as they were presented. 

The board also received an update about the effluent water pipeline work being done on State Route 28, which saw some set backs due to inclement weather in the recent weeks. The district is hoping to have work completed by their original timeline, but may have to finish up some work in the fall, depending on weather. 

The board also voted in favor of being a partner is Sharkfest, a veteran’s club event in partnership with EnviroSports that is set to be held at Sand Harbor Sunday, Aug. 13. 

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