TRPA grading season ends |

TRPA grading season ends


The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency will perform random checks to ensure that all earth-moving activity has ceased in the Tahoe Basin after Monday’s end to the annual grading season.

“Our inspectors – we call them environmental specialists – will be out in the field tomorrow monitoring different activities,” said Pamela Drum, the public affairs coordinator for TRPA.

Grading between Oct. 15 and May 1 is largely prohibited because snow and rain can wash sediment from watersheds into area streams and Lake Tahoe. Also, construction activity on wet, unstable soil causes the ground to release nutrients that directly flow into the lake. The nutrients feed algae, which reduces the lake’s clarity.

Grading of more than 3 cubic feet of earth is prohibited, with some exceptions. Homeowners can continue to do minor landscaping, like planting flowers in their garden.

Drum said the TRPA expected compliance because most contractors were aware of the Oct. 15 grading deadline. TRPA inspectors are out in the field every day, making sure construction activity is in accordance with environmental guidelines.

“We’ve been in touch with those project managers to make sure they are buttoned up by the deadline,” Drum said.

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