Ribaudo column: Support option 2B for Upper Truckee Restoration Project (opinion)
August 6, 2018
Like many I have been following the Upper Truckee Restoration Project for the last half decade or so — nothing ever moves fast here. California State Parks originally laid out three options, only one of which preserves the 18 holes of the Lake Tahoe Golf Course and allows for restoration work.
Other options are to do nothing or reduce the course to nine holes. I oppose both options and support maintaining 18 holes which is Alternative 2B.
I golf. Most weekends you can find me walking nine holes very early at Bijou Golf Course. What I find so unacceptable in the discussion of these options is that some residents want to reduce or eliminate the course. Think about that, others want to impose their values on those who like to play golf. Like golf is not worthy, but hiking is.
We have seen this before: Years ago hikers wanted to impose their values and not allow mountain bikes on the Tahoe Rim Trail, and mountain bikers later got greedy and wanted to impose their values and keep horse owners off the trail.
Of course, the arguments then are what we hear now: it's about the environment. Be smart, those looking to reduce the course have their interests just as California State Parks does, but State Parks is out in the open.
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Luckily the Forest Service didn't buy into these arguments back then, and today it's amazing to see how it works with all the user groups. It was bad policy then and it's bad policy now.
Keep 18 holes of golf and support alternative 2B and reject the elitism that goes with the other options.
There is little doubt that global warming is having an impact throughout California. Every summer now the number of fires and the intensity of fires have increased. It raises an important question in Lake Tahoe.
Over the past couple of decades this region has spent or invested over a billion and half dollars to protect the lake and improve clarity. Given the broader environmental changes, has all this been for naught? The agencies responsible (TRPA, Forrest Service etc.) need to give us a realistic assessment of the region's ability to reach the environmental and clarity goals given the changes we are seeing.
Should our goals change? Perhaps the clarity goal is no longer attainable? Should funding levels change or funding be redirected? This discussion will continue, and the agencies need to be prepared for it.
I was down at Heavenly Village over the weekend to check it out, and you can't help but notice what a success that has become. People, families walking around, shopping, eating, listening to music, having a great time.
I was thinking back to when this project was just being talking about and the opposition to it. Some people thought it would never work. Even some City Council people were against it. When it comes to new ideas are we a "no first'" community? Whenever a new idea comes along our initial reaction seems to be "NO."
I have had the opportunity to work in many places and there are those who say "no" to most everything but there are some that approach new issues with an open mind and a "let's try it and see how it goes attitude." Without fail, those communities that are open minded fare better.
Wouldn't we be better off being open minded, no matter if its Lime Bikes, a traffic circle or other ideas?
Don't miss these summer concerts. I have been to Harveys to see Robert Plant and Phish and both were great. Not just the music but the whole vibe. Same is true for MontBleu. South Shore has created a great vibe for music — get in on it.
It's a wrap
This goes out to all those firefighters battling blazes across this state. Thank you for what you do and be safe!
Carl Ribaudo is a columnist, consultant, speaker, and writer who lives in South Lake Tahoe. He can be reached at email@example.com.