Conservancy thrilled with passage of Prop. 12 |

Conservancy thrilled with passage of Prop. 12

Conservation officials at Lake Tahoe were elated Wednesday after hearing that the $2.1 billion Proposition 12 passed.

The Safe Neighborhood Parks, Clean Water, Clean Air and Coastal Protection Bond earmarks $50 million to be used by the California Tahoe Conservancy, a state agency dedicated to preserving and restoring environmentally sensitive land in the Tahoe Basin.

“We’re very pleased it passed,” said Dennis Machida, executive officer of the Conservancy. “It will help supplement our budget, which will allow us to meet (Environmental Improvement Program) objectives. It’s good news for us.”

The money must still be appropriated by the California Legislature and likely will be phased into the Conservancy’s budget in upcoming years.

The Conservancy expects the money to fund:

n Up to 25 miles of erosion control measures.

n The restoration and enhancement of up to 70 acres of disturbed stream zones.

n The acquisition of up to 160 environmentally sensitive parcels.

n Restoration of up to nine miles of streams.

n Restoration of up to 700 acres of wildlife habitat.

n Increase in public access to more than 30 acres of land, including lakefront property.

n Construction of three miles of bike trails.

The measure may also provide funding for Tahoe land managed by California State Parks as well as local communities.

The League to Save Lake Tahoe, a 4,500-member group dedicated to preserving Tahoe, donated $20,000 to the campaign for Proposition 12.

“It’s great news,” said Rochelle Nason, League executive director. “We’re very excited. It has a lot of benefits for Tahoe.”

Nearly 4.2 million Californians voted in favor of the proposition, accounting for 63.2 percent of the vote. Almost 2.5 million people voted against it, equaling 36.8 percent.

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