Feinstein to host Tahoe Summit | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Feinstein to host Tahoe Summit

RENO (AP) – Federal, state and local officials will gather at Lake Tahoe again this summer for a one-day conference designed to bring attention to the lake’s many environmental challenges.

U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., will host this year’s Lake Tahoe Summit, scheduled for Aug. 21 at Commons Beach in Tahoe City.

Sens. Harry Reid and John Ensign of Nevada also will attend.

Annual forums have been held since 1997, when President Clinton, Vice President Al Gore and other state and federal officials convened at the lake to bring awareness to environmental problems that threaten its delicate ecosystem.

Discussions will focus on water quality, wildfire danger and future planning efforts.

At last year’s summit, Interior Secretary Gale Norton announced more than $37 million in federal funding to help finance restoration programs.

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An annual forum is important to keep attention directed at Tahoe, particularly as the area competes with other high-profile places for coveted environmental restoration funds, said Julie Regan, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency spokeswoman.

“We need to continually draw attention to Lake Tahoe and keep a focus on the critical time that it is for Lake Tahoe,” Regan said. “We essentially have this generation to preserve Lake Tahoe. We could lose it forever, and that is not the legacy we want.”