Incline Village leaders issue another plea for non-full time residents to stay away from Lake Tahoe |

Incline Village leaders issue another plea for non-full time residents to stay away from Lake Tahoe

A view of Lake Tahoe.
Tim Peterson / Unsplash

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Visitors and second homeowners continue to flock to Lake Tahoe despite being told to stay away due to the coronavirus.

The Incline Village General Improvement District sent out another plea Saturday, essentially begging people to listen to the shelter in place orders and stay in their full time residences until the global pandemic has diminished.

IVGID’s plea came after Friday’s announcement from the Washoe County Health District that directed all short term rental properties to inform guests that they must self isolate for 14 days once they get to Tahoe.

As a small and remote mountain-lake community, the healthcare, support services, and facilities lack the capacity and resources to handle an outbreak of COVID-19, said a press release from IVGID.

“Unfortunately, even after we asked visitors to reschedule their trips until COVID-19 is controlled, we have continued to experience an influx of people flocking to the area,” said Indra Winquest, IVGID interim general manager. “We are doing everything we can to protect our community, including closing all recreation and community service facilities, but need visitors and second homeowners to temporarily stay home in order to prevent a medical crisis.”

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, so have restrictions on activities throughout Nevada and California. Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak mandated the closure of most businesses and recreational areas, and prohibited group gatherings. IVGID closed or implemented use-restrictions of its beaches, ski resort, golf courses, fields, indoor and outdoor facilities, and community services. 

“Pursuant to the order of our governor to shelter in place and our county district health officer that you are required to self-quarantine for 14 days when arriving here from out-of-state, we are asking all visitors to stay home and not risk bringing the virus to our mountain towns,” said Washoe County Commissioner Marsha Berkbigler. “Washoe County is at the beginning of the virus surge and our small hospital in Incline is not big enough to treat a large number of patients. Please stay home until we get the all clear from our state and county leaders.”

Truckee, a neighboring town in Nevada County, California, has reported 10 times more positive COVID-19 cases per capita than the rest of California. 

Nevada County has asked owners of second homes in the area to stay at their primary residence during California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home order. Nevada County officials have warned the health care system may become overwhelmed in coming weeks.

El Dorado County has ordered second homeowners and visitors to stay away and the City of South Lake Tahoe authorized police officers to write citations for anybody who breaks the shelter in place order. The fines can be up to $1,000 for vacation rental homeowners and visitors.

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