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Washoe not thrilled with Truckee-area development

Scott Hess, Tribune News Service

TRUCKEE — The leader of the Washoe tribe said the controversial Martis Valley Community Plan doesn’t do enough to protect native cultural resources.

Brian Wallace, chairman of the Washoe tribe, brought up the issue this week before the Placer County Board of Supervisors at a public workshop to discuss the community plan and environmental impact report. The tribe’s concerns have not surfaced at other meetings.

“For the Washoe people and for us, history is more about place than it is time. And the Martis complex actually is the very representative of a symbol of a culture and a history of the land,” Wallace said. “It’s the epicenter of the Washoe culture as we know it and the tracks in the snow that we follow are very, very old.”

The Martis Valley plan encompasses 44,800 acres, or 70-square-miles of land in Placer and Nevada counties. The plan calls for 6,800 houses.

Wallace said the Washoe tribe should be able use the land and keep it natural.

The tribe’s attorney, Tim Seward, said the Martis Valley Environmental Impact Report doesn’t go far enough in protecting cultural resources or addressing significant impacts on archeological and historic resources.

In response, supervisors asked county staff to work with the Washoe to ensure land protections are included in the final plan.

Supervisors will hear the Martis Valley Community Plan again Oct. 21 at Northstar-at-Tahoe. The board can approve or deny the plan, although it is unlikely any final decision will be made.


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