County leaders meet to discuss the future of the South Shore
The El Dorado County Board of Supervisors, a decision-making group that usually convenes in Placerville, met at Lake Tahoe Airport on Tuesday to discuss several topics related to the future of the lake’s South Shore.
Most notably, perhaps, the board approved the South Lake Tahoe Parks, Trails and Recreation Master Plan during their visit and authorized county staff to move forward with the environmental review process.
The plan’s purpose is to serve as a road map to an improved recreational experience in the South Shore. It does this by identifying key recreational needs in the area, such as beach restorations, park improvements, facility renovations and more.
Collaboration among other local governments on the South Shore — including the City of South Lake Tahoe — is big component of the plan.
County supervisors received a presentation on the plan before three out of the four board members in attendance voted to support it. Supervisors Brian Veerkamp, Shiva Frentzen and Norma Santiago provided the “yes” votes, while Supervisor Ron Mikulaco gave a stern “no.”
Supervisor Ron Briggs was not in attendance.
Mikulaco voted to oppose the plan after commenting that approving it would appear to be too much of an “obligation” from the county. He said he was worried about making such a financial commitment when the county is facing a $17 million shortfall in 2015-16.
“This is a terrible idea,” he said.
Staff and other supervisors stressed that the Recreation Master Plan is only a plan, and it doesn’t obligate the county to spend any money.
Nevertheless, the county will split the funding for the environmental review process in half with the City of South Lake Tahoe. It also split the cost of developing the recreation plan with the city, paying about $65,000 of the total $135,000.
Earlier at the meeting, supervisors also spent quite a bit of time listening to a presentation on the formation of a new Meyers Area Plan and hearing feedback from the public.
The presentation, led by county staff, touched on the plan’s development, which included feedback the county received from several public workshops on the matter.
The audience was then allowed to voice their opinions on the plan. And similar to comments received at a county Planning Commission meeting two weeks ago, community members had mixed ideas on what the future of Meyers should look like.
Some supported a plan that would be friendlier to new and larger developments more than others, but many seemed to favor a balance between the two sides.
Other popular issues concerning speakers were the 42-foot height restriction on buildings and the reduction of density limits, both of which were preferred by planning commissioners.
The majority also seemed to agree that a formalized committee, or Municipal Advisory Council, needs to be created so that members of the Meyers community have a more official and direct role in the planning process while making the system more transparent.
Supervisors, deciding that more discussion and input from the community on the plan was necessary, then voted unanimously to hold another workshop on the topic.
The workshop was scheduled for Dec. 5. More information on that will be available soon.
“What I’m hearing is we’re about 98 percent there,” Supervisor Veerkamp said. “There’s a few little things that still need to be worked out. I would certainly entertain that it’s the community’s plan to work out. I don’t know if it needs to be a full board workshop. You guys have got this far without our meddling, and I would encourage you to finish it.”