City Council to consider next step for Bijou Community Park |

City Council to consider next step for Bijou Community Park

Susan Wood

Like a boomerang, relocating South Lake Tahoe government offices to Bijou Community Park will be back before the City Council on Tuesday.

The council, which meets at 9 a.m., needs to decide whether it wants city staff to continue exploring building a city hall there as directed in its meeting of May 18. Since then, hundreds of people have signed a petition rejecting the idea – some stakeholders even provided a tour of the recreational grounds to City Manager Dave Jinkens and Mayor Tom Davis.

Davis mentioned in the council’s mid-June meeting that he would entertain abandoning the prospect of moving the city offices to the park off Al Tahoe Boulevard, given the huge investment volunteers have made to the wooded area.

Petitioners believe the proposal “will destroy the simple beauty and tranquility of this natural setting.”

Other possible sites remain on the table.

The city is trying to escape the cost of high rent – about $130,000 annually – at its Council Chambers building on Lake Tahoe Boulevard, which also houses the planning division. The city faces a 2006 deadline before its lease expires, so planning is of the essence. Moreover, the lease amount is expected to increase.

It’s estimated building a city hall to combine the council chambers with the city administrative offices on Tata Lane will cost about $4 million. Much of the cost may be absorbed in grant funding.

In other business, the council may: Allow for a parking agreement for six spaces between Cecil’s LLC and the city transit center near Stateline at a rate of $75 per month and $25 for snowmelt costs; as well as listen to a budget review given by Finance Director Bruce Budman, who is leaving the city July 23.

The council may also seek an extension to meeting the California Integrated Waste Management standards requiring half the solid waste of the state’s cities and counties to be diverted to recycling or reduction programs.

Plus, the council will hear that 41 property owners have made the lien list implemented by the city in the last six months or more for failing to pay $9,336 in fees to South Tahoe Refuse, which maintains a franchise agreement with the local government to pick up trash.

– Susan Wood can be reached at (530) 542-8009 or via e-mail at

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