Ribaudo: Notes from the Front Row | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Ribaudo: Notes from the Front Row

Carl Ribaudo

Congratulations are in order for all those who participated in setting the world record for the longest bicycle parade. A pat on the back to the Slow Rollers for organizing the event and to all those who participated. This is the kind of initiative the local community needs to continue to put forward. The key is to overcome the beaurocracy and local government, just as the Slow Rollers and the community did. Excellent job.

While some may disagree with me, there are three things I believe would do lots to improve the look of the community; completion by Caltrans of the sidewalk and gutters program, a sign ordinance that would phase out back-lit plastic signs and the city enforcing its ordinances to get trash containers out of public view. We could do a lot to help ourselves if we bit the bullet and made these changes.

A great job by those responsible for painting all the power boxes. These folks are really talented and their art has drawn a focus on the recreational passions of South Shore. They have also helped to reinvigorate a moribund public arts program that was just about non-existent in South Shore. Again, we are way behind other communities in this area. How about every artist in town adopt a fire hydrant and paint them adding yet more character to South Shore?

Changes at the city. City Manager Tony O’Rourke is leaving for Yakima and though some employees and former employees have heaped criticism on the City Manager for his tough approach to getting the city budget in better shape, I have not heard many taxpayers or the City Council complain.

It was interesting to see the chairman of the Lahontan board, Don Jardine, fire off a letter criticizing my last months column. I stand by my comments. Lahontan is the worst run agency in the basin and Mr. Jardine and the board should resign.

I find it interesting that Dan Siegel from the California Attorney General’s office has taken issue with the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Regional Plan Update that seeks to delegate authority to local jurisdictions, coverage rules, and the allowance of new development. Siegel does not believe the local governments and community are capable of taking care of the lake and making good decisions. This from a person who represents a state that has basically ignored the needs of the Lake Tahoe until Nevada Passed SB 271 and threatened to leave the TRPA and from a state that is so dysfunctional it can’t manage its own affairs. Siegel and his masters in Sacramento just don’t get it. Maybe they should focus on just getting a budget to say nothing of fixing schools, immigration etc., before telling others how to run their affairs. Just sayin’.

For all those who always want to slap an excess-profits tax on specific business, how about one for Apple? For the most recent quarter, the company reported a net income of $11.62 billion, compared with $5.99 billion for the year prior. Surely they must be thinking this is inexcusable and must be stopped.

For those rock ‘n’ roll fans, you might want to check out “My Cross to Bear,” the memoir of Greg Allman from the Allman Brothers. The Allman Brothers Band has been around for decades in one form or another for decades and this book charts Greg Allmans involvement all along the way. It’s amazing how he survived. Live at the Fillmore is still one of my top 5 albums. Hey, what’s an album?

Interesting, but expected, to see the League and its cohorts, the old-line environmental groups, oppose the TRPA regional plan update. They simply want more of the same failed policies. They refuse to recognize that you can’t separate environmental protection from the economy and the needs of community, that there is an environmental cost to doing nothing which is what they would really prefer. Same old stodgy thinking there. Nothing like doubling down on failure.

I had a chance to go to Death Valley National Park for the first time on my motorcycle and it was just incredible. In fact from South Shore we are lucky to be an easy drive to Death Valley, Yosemite and Lassen National Parks. Do yourself a favor and plan to visit all three. Maybe someday Hetch Hetchy will be a National Park?

– Carl Ribaudo is a contributing columnist to the Tahoe Daily Tribune. He is also a consultant, speaker and writer who lives in South Shore. He can be reached at carl@smgonline.net

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