Introducing South Lake Tahoe’s city council candidates (4/10) | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Introducing South Lake Tahoe’s city council candidates (4/10)

Patrick Jarrett
Courtesy Photo |

Over the coming weeks Tahoe Daily Tribune will share Q-and-A’s from the 10 candidates vying for two available seats on the South Lake Tahoe city council. We will introduce two candidates per edition, before diving into pertinent issues in November’s local election.

ROBERT TOPEL

What qualifications do you have to be a South Lake Tahoe city councilor?

An interest in the development of the city and community and welfare of the residents.

What is your vision for the South Lake Tahoe of the future?

A comfortable serene mountain community accessible to all without over building or crowding, where you can enjoy a comfortable stay of any length.

How would you address the issue of affordable housing?

This is a tough one. We would have to find a suitable location or locations to develop existing housing or build with the least possible environmental impact.

What is your stance on the Loop Road Project?

I feel a Loop Road is unnecessary. It would displace numerous families, destroy more ecology, trees, and other flora/fauna while adding an ugly scar of asphalt which absorbs heat then releases it, adding to warming of the Basin.

How are you currently involved in the community, and in what ways would you as a city councilor work to unite the community?

I can attend and participate in community meetings. If elected I would seek community help and hands on support in addressing issues.

How would you propose the city regulate the recreational use of marijuana if it passes?

Not having any background in such matters, I could not propose anything without being more educated on this issue. I would seek input from the community.

As councilor, how would you help address our community’s mental health issues?

Make it a priority because it affects everyone, not just in this city but nationally. Look for state and/or federal funding.

Where would you like to see Transient Occupancy Tax dollars spent?

Improving residential streets, not sidewalks, lighting or resurfacing, but take them out and repave.

In your opinion, what is the most pressing issue in South Lake Tahoe?

A lack of the community being allowed more input and participation in the planning and development of our city and area.

Who would you like to see fill the other open seat on the city council?

Someone with similar goals who looks for more community involvement and environmental protection.

PATRICK JARRETT

What qualifications do you have to be a South Lake Tahoe city councilor?

I feel my experience in the business community and dealing with people and situations, and attending the Citizens Academy have prepared me for this role.

What is your vision for the South Lake Tahoe of the future?

So. Lake Tahoe needs to embrace the changes we need to make to bring this community together. We need to focus more on the local aspect, but not neglect the tourist. They are both important, but the locals are what keeps this community going. We need to focus more on the town as a whole (not a hole) and not just this little patch or that one.

How would you address the issue of affordable housing?

Affordable housing has many aspects. We need to work with homeowners and developers to find a solution to a very real problem. We don’t need another ordinance limiting homeowners options, but we do need more housing. We can start with a lot of these run-down motels around town. TOT is not being made there, and TAUs are sitting idle.

What is your stance on the Loop Road Project?

The loop road is unnecessary. It will displace residents and tear up our town for a long time. In the Citizens Academy, we learned about grants and how they work. There is no such thing as free money. Mr. Hasty and the TTD are not giving the citizens all of the information.

How are you currently involved in the community, and in what ways would you as a city councilor work to unite the community?

Every job that I have had in SLT has been in dealing with the public. I grew up here since I was 8. I take pride in this community, and I would like to see more community events. Something to get us out of the house, meeting new people and doing new things. And the tourists can come too. Let’s show some pride in where we live.

How would you propose the city regulate the recreational use of marijuana if it passes?

We will have to see how the regulation limits or helps the city in dealing with situations, but we still need to enforce the laws. I’m not in favor of dispensaries operating on our main street, but if it passes and we have more dispensaries, we will have to regulate them accordingly.

As councilor, how would you help address our community’s mental health issues?

Mental health is an issue that we need to address. We need more resources to help deal with the problem, and we need more public awareness.

Where would you like to see Transient Occupancy Tax dollars spent?

TOT should be spent more on roads than anything else.

In your opinion, what is the most pressing issue in South Lake Tahoe?

Our most pressing issue seems to be housing. If the workforce can’t afford to live here, they will move somewhere else and start a new job there.

Who would you like to see fill the other open seat on the city council?

I would like to see another individual who cares about this community the way I do.

Read last edition’s Q-and-A’s with candidates Tamara Wallace and Ted Long here.