Interest meager for Pathway 2007 committee | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Interest meager for Pathway 2007 committee

Gregory Crofton

With the deadline less than a week away, only 15 nominations have been filed for a 40-seat committee that is an integral part of Pathway 2007: a massive planning effort to chart the future of the Lake Tahoe Basin.

The four public agencies involved in Pathway 2007 want people to serve on a committee called the Pathway Forum. The forum will represent the general public and a variety of interest groups in the basin.

People selected to serve will be expected to work together and come up with consensus-based recommendations regarding growth and resource management issues in the basin.

The recommendations will be considered by the four agencies involved in Pathway 2007: Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, U.S. Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board and Nevada Division of Environmental Protection.

The forum is scheduled to conduct its first meeting Dec. 14. Members will be expected to meet 8 to 10 times a year through fall 2007.

The deadline for nominations is Nov. 18. Nomination forms are available online at http://www.pathway2007.org. People can nominate themselves or be nominated by others.

“Hundreds of people have told me they are interested,” said Julie Regan, a spokeswoman for Pathway 2007, “they just haven’t done the paperwork.”

Forum members must be willing to reach out to community members and California and Nevada residents to ensure viewpoints from inside and outside the basin are part of the planning process.

“All four of the agencies are equally invested in the effort,” said Rex Norman, Forest Service public affairs officer. “We have never done this ambitious of a planning effort before. Our Forest Plan, as well as the plans of other agencies, will be updated in a public participation environment that offers a place for everyone to become involved.”

Technical working groups are another aspect of Pathway 2007. Their job is to update environmental standards, or thresholds, set for the basin.

The groups – one each for transportation, wildlife, soil conservation, water quality, air quality and noise, fisheries, vegetation and fuels, scenic, recreation, socioeconomic, and management systems – met for the first time Tuesday at the Horizon Resort Casino.

The 10 to 15 people who serve on each technical working group will be meeting for the next two years to establish scientific foundations for environmental standards that will stand for the next 20 years, Regan said.

The members of each group are from the staffs of the four agencies involved in Pathway 2007, local utility districts, experts from Canada and the United States, and members of the public and the private sector.

For more information, go to http://www.pathway2007.org or call (775) 588-4547 ext. 235.


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