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Man drowns after being separated from boat at Lake Tahoe

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A man who became separated from his boat drowned Monday afternoon at Lake Tahoe.

South Lake Tahoe first responders were notified at about 3:40 p.m. that two adult males became separated from their boat approximately one and a half miles offshore, with one of the victims severely injured, according to a press release.

South Lake Tahoe Fire Rescue, South Lake Tahoe Police Department, Tahoe-Douglas Fire District, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and the Coast Guard initiated a search. 

Officials said the first victim was found almost immediately, and had minor injuries, but the second victim stayed missing for 45 minutes until he was recovered.

Life saving measures were attempted for another hour with the assistance of the CalTahoe Paramedics before the man succumbed to his injuries, said the release.

“Although tragic, this event is a reminder to all boaters to know proper boat operations, boat safety and to always wear a life jacket,” said SLTFR Chief Clive Savacool in the release.

El Dorado County reports a 2nd resident has died due to COVID-19

El Dorado County announced Monday that a second resident has died due to complications with the coronavirus.

Officials said a Placerville man between the ages of 50-64 succumbed to the virus in an out of county hospital.

The first death was reported on July 18, a Tahoe man at least 65 years old.

Health officials announced 26 new cases in the county, including 11 in the Lake Tahoe region, but also reported 36 assumed recoveries. The recoveries recently have outnumbered new cases and have lowered the active count to 159. The new numbers are from three days, Saturday through Monday.

While reporting the numbers, county health officials want residents to be aware that the state reporting system, CalREDIE, continues to experience delays that impact the data.

Of the new cases, two are kids 17 or under, 15 are between 18 and 49, six are aged 50-64 and three are 65 or older.

The county has reported 755 total cases with 375 coming from the Tahoe area.

Four residents have been hospitalized, three are in the intensive care unit.

Carson City Health and Human Services reported over the weekend, Friday through Sunday, 11 new cases in Douglas County. 

Douglas has had 205 total cases and 44 remain active, including 10 in the Lake Tahoe communities.

Zephyr Cove has four new active cases since last week and have had 12 total. The Stateline area has six active cases out of 24 total.

Douglas has not suffered any virus-related deaths.

Washoe County reported no deaths on Monday and 66 recoveries compared to 43 new cases.

The county has had 5,835 total cases and 1,101 remain active.

Incline Village has 10 active residents with the virus out of 69 total.

South Lake Tahoe to decide on new mayor, hear VHR closure appeals

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — The South Lake Tahoe City Council on Tuesday will choose a new mayor and mayor pro tem. 

Last year, the council voted to change the mayoral term to nine months. The new mayor will be chosen at Tuesday’s council meeting but will have to be affirmed after the November election with two new members joining the panel. 

Council will also hear two appeals for vacation home rental closures. In both situations, the owners were sent emails reminding them of the upcoming permit renewal fee due date. Both owners appealed the decision.

The planning commission denied the appeal for the property on 1439 Ski Run Blvd., Unit J4 so representatives of the property are appealing the denial.

The planning commission granted the appeal for the property on 439 Ala Wai Boulevard No. 136 but representatives from Tahoe Neighborhoods Group, the group responsible for Measure T, appealed the commission’s decision. 

The council will also consider approving a Caltrans grant for repavement of the South Hangar at the Tahoe Airport. They will also possibly approve conceptual designs for the Riverside parcels being developed as affordable housing by St. Joseph Community Land Trust. 

Under new business, the council will consider a bid protest from Motorola. The fire department awarded a contract for public safety communications to Walter Telecomm, Inc. in July. Motorola also put in a bid for the contract and is now protesting the city’s decision. 

The council will consider applying for a CARES Act Community Development Block Grant which staff recommends be used for childcare and youth organizations. If they are awarded the grant and can use it for that purpose, they will solicit grant applications. 

The first reading of an amendment to the Tourist Core Area Plan and an amendment to the Parks and Recreation chapter regarding leash laws for dogs will be heard. 

The city is looking into ways to become more dog friendly.

The council will hear a draft of the five-year capital improvement plan but will not be taking action on it during the meeting. 

Finally, the council will consider submitting an application for the Homekey Grant which would allow the city to purchase motels. 

The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 11 and may be watched on www.cityofslt.us or https://zoom.us/j/98010031388. 

To make a comment call 530-542-6500. The meeting ID is 98010031388, press *9 to indicate a desire to make a comment. Or email publiccomment@cityofslt.us with the Public Comment Item # in the subject line, prior to or during the meeting.

LTVA accepting nonprofit applications for $250,000 in funds from celebrity golf

STATELINE, Nev. – The Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority will distribute a record $250,000 to local nonprofits resulting from the 31st annual American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament with organizations invited to apply for funding by 4 p.m. Monday, Aug. 31.

The application is available here.

For financial support consideration, groups must be in South Lake Tahoe or in the Tahoe Township portion of Douglas County and meet 501(c)3 certified nonprofit guidelines. Each must provide an outline of their mission, describe how the donation will be used and indicate impact in the community.

Grants will encompass four categories awarding increments of $20,000, $10,000, $5,000 and $2,000 based on: 1) Organizational Sustainability – significant impact on long term growth and stability; 2) Organizational Impact – increasing constituents served; 3) Community Need – distribution of services or support; and 4) Scholarships – for individual participation.

Recipients will be presented with checks at the LTVA Board of Directors meeting at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 10.

The entire tournament purse of $600,000 is being donated to COVID-19 relief organizations, equal justice initiatives and South Tahoe-based nonprofits. NBC Sports and Korbel previously directed an additional $12,500 to the Boys & Girls Club of Lake Tahoe as part of the annual Korbel Closest-to-the-Pin contest.

Since 2009, donations exceeding $1.6 million have been distributed to more than 80 local nonprofits to assist over 11,500 individuals.

Since its inception in 1990, the tournament has donated more than $5.5 million to local and national nonprofits. The nation’s longest running celebrity golf tournament captured the media spotlight with Patrick Mahomes, Stephen Curry and Tony Romo among famed sports stars, legends and celebrity competitors. The elite field also featured Charles Barkley, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Larry the Cable Guy, 13 Hall of Famers and 19 active players, including All-Pros/All-Stars representing major sports. Former tennis star Mardy Fish won the tournament and set a new course record with a 9-under par 63 during the second round.

Due to COVID-19 impacts, and like major sporting events throughout the country, the American Century Championship returned as a live television event but without spectators. Title sponsor American Century Investments, NBC Sports and the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority decided to move forward with the event in a collective effort reflecting the area’s desire to serve as a national model for establishing and maintaining a safe, careful and thoughtful protocol during the pandemic.

“To conduct this tournament safely with our partners at American Century Investments and NBC during the most difficult of conditions and to raise funds that will have such positive consequences on so many local organizations is so rewarding,” said Carol Chaplin, LTVA president and CEO in a press release. “It also signaled renewal for Lake Tahoe and kept the destination before the public with the message that we’d be ready for their return when appropriate.”

“We love and are inspired by the incredible support of the Lake Tahoe community for the American Century Championship,” Jonathan Thomas, president and chief executive officer of American Century Investments said in the release. “While 2020 was very different from past years, we remain committed to funding the local Tahoe charities.”

The 32nd annual American Century Championship is July 6-11, 2021.

For more information, visit: www.AmericanCenturyChampionship.com or www.TahoeSouth.com.

Callie’s Cabin: Spinach artichoke dip and bread bowl

Welcome to cabin fever. It’s a real thing — restlessness rising from a prolonged stay in a confined place. The thing is, in the pre-pandemic summertime I’d swim, travel, and write or edit a book. This year, my life, like maybe yours, has been turned upside down due to the new normal.

Sure, I try to maintain structure, like walking the dog, planting trees, writing articles — and cooking up immune-boosting summer-ish vegetables. It’s all part of my long stay healthy “staycation” (a vacation at home).

So this week I decided to enjoy making a homemade veggie dip including a small bread bowl and crunchy, stress-busting gourmet crackers. The dip is often enjoyed as an appetizer for more than one — but these days one is the new normal number.

Spinach-artichoke dip brings me back home to my roots in California. South of San Jose we have fields of artichokes, garlic, mushrooms, and spinach. While it may not be a Pacific Northwest or enjoying my favorite Emerald Suite in Seattle with a bay-city view — it is inspired by life the way it was in our Golden State and provided a homey feel-good vibe.

Spinach-Artichoke Dip and Bread Bowl

1 cup parmesan cheese shavings (save ½ for topping)

1/3 cup sour cream

½ cup Greek Yogurt (I used honey vanilla)

1 to 2 teaspoons fresh garlic, minced

½ cup baby spinach, rinsed, drained

½ cup fresh artichoke hearts, cooked, drained, chopped (I used fresh, raw mushrooms)

½ teaspoon Herb de Provence (a mix of Italian dried herbs)

Ground pepper to taste

2 tablespoons European style butter (salted), melted

1 small round sourdough bread (I used one purchased at Safeway)

Whole grain crackers

In a mixing bowl, combine cheese, sour cream, and yogurt. Stir. Fold in garlic, artichokes chunks (or mushrooms), spinach, spice, and ground pepper. Put in fridge. Meanwhile, cut top off bread. Scoop out bread. Brush bowl with butter or dip bread into bowl with melted butter. Fill bread bowl with dip. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes or until bread is golden brown and cheese is bubbly. Serve hot. Cut or cut into quarters and dip. You can serve with crackers. Serves 1. *You can put in the refrigerator for leftovers.

The bread bowl was small – ideal for one. This fun to make and eat bread bowl with dip helped beat a bout of cabin fever on the south shore. On the deck with my oasis garden spots, I savored the treat as you will, too. As I often say, “You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be.” Who wants their own bread bowl?

Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, HonTey, Coffee, Tea, Superfoods, Essential Oils, Herbs and Spices) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.) Her website is www.calorey.com.

Lake Tahoe Basin road work through Saturday

LONG-TERM PROJECT

U.S. Highway 50 (El Dorado County): Work has been suspended until late summer on a $14.1 million project to replace the Echo Summit Sidehill Viaduct, located 7 miles west of South Lake Tahoe. This project is replacing the current bridge, built in 1939, with a new structure to meet current design and safety standards. Construction is expected to resume in mid-August. Completion is expected this fall. For more information, visit way2tahoe.com.

SHORT-TERM PROJECTS

State Route 28 (Placer County) from Tahoe State Park to Sierra Terrace Road: Motorists can expect one-way traffic control from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. Sunday through Friday for electrical work. 

State Route 28 (Placer County) from Park Lane to Speed Boat Avenue: Motorists can expect one-way traffic control from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. Sunday through Friday for electrical work. 

U.S. Highway 50 (El Dorado County) from Pioneer Trail in Meyers to Country Club Drive: Motorists can expect one-way traffic control from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m. Sunday through Friday for electrical work. 

State Route 89 (El Dorado County) from Tallac Drive to the Tahoe Visitors Center: Motorists one-way traffic control from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday for electrical work. 

State Route 89 (El Dorado County) from Eagle Falls Campground to the junction with U.S. Highway 50 in South Lake Tahoe: Motorists can expect one-way traffic control at various locations from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday for tree work. 

The Caltrans District Traffic Management Branch has reviewed each project and determined that individual project delays are expected to be less than the statewide policy maximum of 30 minutes, unless noted otherwise above.

Unexpected schedule changes may occur. For current information on roadwork, delays, road conditions and emergency closures, call the voice-activated Caltrans Highway Information Network at 1-800-427-7623 (ROAD) or visit Caltrans’ “QuickMap” website.

Tahoe Talk: US surpasses 5 million virus cases; Meteor shower peaks this week

Tahoe Talk brings you the major news dominating the world right now and some fun niche news for conversation starters as you break bread with friends and family. Listen to the discussion here.

Quick Hits:

  • Trump signs four executive orders … you’ll hear plenty about this throughout the week, no details yet about overall stimulus checks
  • A magnitude 5.1 earthquake along North Carolina’s border with Virginia on Sunday… strongest to rock the region since a magnitude 5.2 quake in 1916
  • 12,000-plus crew members are still on cruise ships in US waters months after shutdowns
  • Mulan premieres on Disney Plus Sept. 4 for $30 (in addition to $6.99 monthly subscription)
  • Global spending on cloud services hit a record $35 billion in the second quarter, surging 30% as companies shifted biz apps online for WFH.
  • Samsung unveils its 5G Galaxy Note 20 phone at a lowered price tag of $1K
  • Perseids meteor shower is set to peak this week (Tues/Wed best for our region)

Deeper Dives:

  • The U.S. surpassed 5 million confirmed coronavirus cases Sunday — one-quarter of all cases reported worldwide. The staggering milestone comes just 17 days after reaching 4 million cases and as the U.S. reports more than 165k deaths. Brazil is now the second country with 3m cases and also the second country to report 100k deaths. All this as the world nears passes 20m cases, a number experts widely believe is underreported due to insufficient or inaccurate testing.
  • San Quentin State Prison is now home to the nation’s worst coronavirus outbreak after its case levels last week passed those at an Ohio prison (2,470 cases and 22 deaths as of last week since the May transfer of inmates from a Chino facility hard-hit by the virus)
  • California corporate boards would no longer be allowed to have only white members if a bill currently under consideration in the Legislature passes. The bill, would require publicly held companies to have at least one person of color on their corporate boards by 2021 or face a $100,000 fine … this follows on the heels of a controversial 2018 law that mandated women in corporate boardrooms

Local News:

  • Minden protests conclude with no vandalism or injuries
  • All campfires in NV banned
  • City Council SLT and other filing deadlines
  • NLT town hall for small business on Thursday
  • Bats test positive for rabbles in Douglas Co.

Fact Check:
Trump: “Children are virtually immune from this disease.” False. 97,000 children test positive in the last two weeks of July

National Relaxation Day: Sat. Aug. 15.

Listen to the discussion here.

Thunderstorms are forecast for early this week at Lake Tahoe

Scattered showers and thunderstorms are forecast for the next couple of days bringing a higher risk of wildfire.

The National Weather Service in Reno is calling for afternoon thunderstorms with a 30% chance of precipitation on Monday and a 40% chance on Tuesday.

Monday is expected to start clear with increasing clouds. The high will be about 80 with a 5 to 10 mph wind. Thunderstorms are expected mainly after 5 p.m.

By 8 p.m. the clouds will begin to clear and the low temperature will drop to around 55.

Thunderstorms on Tuesday are expected after 11 a.m. but it will be a mostly sunny day with a high near 76.

Light and variable winds early turn into 10 to 15 mph winds coming from the southwest.

The clouds clear out Tuesday evening and the low dips down to about 50.

The forecast for the rest of the week is sunny and clear with highs in the upper 70s and the lows in the mid to low 50s, but winds could be gusty on Wednesday.

A western wind will range from 10 to 15 mph and could gust up to 25 mph before decreasing later in the evening.

Bald tires, speed, wet road likely cause of single car rollover

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — California Highway Patrol said a vehicle rollover Saturday was at least partially due to poor tire tread.

The South Lake Tahoe CHP responded to a report of a vehicle collision Saturday on U.S. Highway 50, just east of the road to Sierra-at-Tahoe.

When arriving on scene, CHP determined it was a single car rollover with two occupants.

Both occupants were transported to Barton Memorial Hospital as a precaution, according to a CHP report.

After further investigation, officers noted nearly bald tires on the silver sedan.

The combination of speed, bald tires and wet conditions due to afternoon thunderstorms was the likely reason for the crash.

CHP advises motorists to check tire tread regularly and to slow down in wet conditions.

Real estate: Lake Tahoe is much more than a single market (Opinion)

It’s that time of year when agents, brokers and “media-types” write articles and provide commentary on the Lake Tahoe real estate market.

Much of this material can be misleading because Lake Tahoe is not one real estate market but many submarkets each divided into a number of sectors. You can’t even legitimately lump together the sales of communities in North Lake Tahoe or South Lake Tahoe and extrapolate prices or trends because there are too many submarkets on each side of the lake.

Just in Incline Village and Crystal Bay we have 12 different market sectors for residential property. Then you also have to consider the multiunit investment residential properties, commercial properties and raw land. So, anyone writing generalizations about the Lake Tahoe real estate market and then trying to use those broad statistics to make sweeping statements is simply misleading the general public with inaccurate information. It’s a disservice to buyers, sellers and anyone connected with the real estate community to spout statistics that do not accurately reflect local market conditions.

During summertime we can anticipate seeing the usual pie charts, bar graphs, statements about market share, median prices, average prices and other types of numerical data. Much of the time these statistics are cleansed or skewed to represent a particular point of view or make one company look better than another on paper. The reality is that anyone making claims about the Lake Tahoe real estate market as a whole and then trying to use those claims to justify one position or another is really doing nothing more than obfuscating the issue.

The Incline Village real estate market bears absolutely no relation to the Kings Beach area which bears no relation to Zephyr Cove real estate and so on. It may be difficult for non-residents of Lake Tahoe to accept that there are so many different markets within the Lake Tahoe basin but that is the harsh reality. If you have been shopping for single-family homes at South Lake Tahoe and then go to Glenbrook because on the map it doesn’t look very far away you will most likely get sticker shock.

Even within the Incline Village and Crystal Bay real estate market new buyers are easily confused by the widely varying prices for properties of similar square footage and condition. We are not just talking about the difference between a house on a busy street versus one in a quiet location with a panoramic lakeview. Some subdivisions are considered more desirable than others based on location, proximity to the beach, lot size, sunlight exposure and other factors. You can’t just say houses in Incline Village are worth X dollars per square foot because there are so many variables one must consider.

Worst of all are the various real estate valuation services on the Internet such as Zillow and House Values that use proprietary algorithms to provide estimates of property values along with information on price trends all across America. Unfortunately, these services are unable to provide local knowledge or differentiate between a house that was recently remodeled and the tear down next-door.

The only way to truly know how a particular market sector within the Lake Tahoe basin is performing is to do a detailed analysis for that specific area. It takes a lot of time and energy to crunch the numbers, analyze individual properties and draw realistic conclusions, something that a generic algorithm on a computer in Florida cannot come close to doing. So, when you see an article, chart, or graph that makes generalizations and lumps all of North Shore, South Shore or the entire Lake Tahoe area together as one real estate market just turn the page, unless you like reading fiction.

Don Kanare is the founder and Sabrina Belleci is the owner / broker of RE/MAX North Lake.