IVGID raises beach rates; limits access due to COVID | TahoeDailyTribune.com

IVGID raises beach rates; limits access due to COVID

Laney Griffo

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The Incline Village General Improvement District Board of Trustees on Thursday voted to raise beach venue rates.

The rate increases include adult daily beach guest access, kayak storage, paddleboard storage, daily boat launch fees, and season pass watercraft launch fees.

For the daily beach guest access price, there were previously peak and nonpeak season prices. Staff recommends just charging one price, $15 throughout the whole year.

Kayak storage would increase from $250 to $275 and paddleboard storage would increase from $175 to $195.

General Manager Indra Winquest said there are 900 spots for paddleboards and kayaks in storage and an extensive waiting list for spots. However, he said many of those spots remain empty throughout the season, with people are not using them.

Winquest hopes that raising the costs will discourage people from paying for spots they aren’t using as well as gain the district some revenue to help them continue to subsidize beach access for residents.

Finally, launch prices would increase from $20 to $22 for daily launches and from $160 to $225 for a season pass. The season pass price compares to $250 at Cave Rock and Sand Harbor, $150 for residents at Tahoe Vista and $265 for residents at Lake Forest.

Staff originally recommended the season pass fee being raised to $195 but Vice Chair Matthew Dent wanted to push the price higher.

In addition to the rate changes, a new clause was added to the boat launch agreement which bans commercial use of the launches. People caught using them commercially will have their ramp privileges revoked.

All these changes will go into effect in May 2022.

The board approved the changes 4-1, with Trustee Sara Schmitz providing the only no vote.

The board also approved an emergency ordinance to limit beach access this summer due to COVID.

Staff recommends limiting the purchase of additional punch cards to five because last year, the district saw people abusing the punch card program. In 2018, 180 additional punch cards were purchased, compared to last year where 2,000 punch cards were sold. Winquest said he saw some people purchasing up to 25 extra punch cards.

One change this emergency ordinance made for this year, compared to last year is residents may pay for guest access with credit card at the gate as long as they are with their guest.

Pop-up tents will again be limited.

The board approved the ordinance unanimously but asked legal staff to look into the possibility of limiting employee access to the beaches this summer too.

The board delayed approval of recreation center bathroom remodels but not before a lengthy discussion on district protocol.

Dent and Schmitz originally wanted the item to be pulled from the agenda completely because it was asking them to approve a contract without seeing the design work. The board agreed to keep the item on the agenda for discussion only.

Winquest had approved the contract for design work because it was within his spending authority but Schmitz said she wanted those kinds of projects to come to the board first, as per the district’s policy.

“Our policy makes it very difficult for staff to do their job,” Winquest said, adding that if the board wants to approve these projects before staff pursues them despite the projects falling under the GM’s spending authority, then the policy needs to reflect that.

Another point of contention was the price point of this project and whether the bathrooms need to be remodeled at all.

Engineering Manager Nathan Chorey said the remodel would make the bathrooms more accessible for people with disabilities. Both Trustees Kendra Wong and Michaela Tonking said even without disabilities, it’s hard to navigate those bathrooms so this is a priority project.

As for the price point, Tonking said that if they are going to make the bathrooms last another 30 years, the price is worth it.

The board also unanimously approved four contracts for construction of the Burnt Cedar Pool project. Construction will happen through the summer and finish early 2022. The proposed opening date is Memorial Day weekend.

The board also approved an agenda item to convert one of the tennis courts into four pickleball courts. If the court is converted, it could be used for pickleball, which is growing in popularity in the community, while still remaining available for tennis.

During the General Manager’s report, Winquest said that this meeting would be Chorey’s last since he has taken another job.

Board chair Tim Callicrate thanked Chorey for his service to the district and said he was impressed with his professionalism in the face of adversity from some community members who have been openly critical of the public works department.

The district has also scheduled public workshops to hear updates recommended by the Ordinance 7 committee.

They are scheduled from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 13, and from noon – 2 p.m. and 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.Wednesday, May 19. After the workshops are complete, the district will survey the community to get feedback.

The board’s next meeting will be a budget workshop and is scheduled for 3:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 5.

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