EDITORIAL: Don’t stall the process
Many of our community members and organizations have a bad habit of reacting defensively before they fully understand a new idea.
Some lakewide environmental groups’ outrage toward the Regional Plan Update and its clause on transect zoning represents the latest instance. Their initial and immediately defensive argument that the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency is instituting a plan that will overdevelop our communities and skyrocket building height to unprecedented levels is far-fetched, amateur – and most importantly, ill-informed.
If the TRPA governing board approves the long-needed (23 years and counting now) Regional Plan Update, and transect zoning with it, walls of buildings and developer greed will not immediately consume our communities.
Instead, each community can use transect zoning as a tool to shape the future. It doesn’t matter what a map says – no matter if a building or complex is one or four stories high, the communities will be the judge.
At the end of the day, these projects will still need to go through a vigorous review process with TRPA – a process that holds all parties accountable with more public input and environmental research.
Spending hours condemning transect zoning, writing letters and preparing a contingent of 3-minute wordsmiths to publicly comment at TRPA governing board and advisory planning commission meetings doesn’t further the conversation of bettering our community – it stalls it.
Instead, we recommend our local environmental groups work with their neighbors to devise a thorough and well-reasoned community plan that uses the options transect zoning and the Regional Plan Update could potentially afford.
If they feel the results will harm the lake’s environment, then it’s time to campaign for the TRPA Governing Board to reject the plan.
Our local environmental groups will earn a lot more respect from the people who live, work and love Tahoe if they participate in the process instead of obstructing it.
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