The Tahoe Transportation District Board of Directors heeded the advice of Councilman Bruce Grego and other board members and decided to check in with the City of South Lake Tahoe regarding the city government's preferences concerning the proposed Loop Road alignment. Opponents of the existing road alignment were heartened at this action. The TTD Board decided to again discuss the matter at its September meeting.
Councilman Bruce Grego said he hopes that the young event grows to become a South Lake Tahoe staple. “It's exciting. I hope it creates a traditional for our community. We're looking for more special events, and people are trying to think what works. So this is an experiment, but hopefully it will become a tradition,” said Grego.
A medical marijuana dispensary in South Lake Tahoe will not be able to move — and could close — after a change in stance by two City Council members this week.
On June 5, City Councilmen Tom Davis and Hal Cole voiced support for allowing the City of Angels 2 Collective to move around the corner from 989 Third St. to 2179 Lake Tahoe Blvd.
But on Tuesday, the councilmen voted against ratifying the change in location for the dispensary. Councilman Bruce Grego continued to oppose the move at the meeting. Without the approval of a majority of the council, the dispensary could be forced to close.
A divided South Lake Tahoe City Council will ask the proponents of a loop road project for additional options following discussion of the controversial proposal Tuesday.
City councilmen Hal Cole, Tom Davis and Bruce Grego voted in favor of sending a letter to the Tahoe Transportation District asking the agency to present additional options for the design of the project.
Councilman Bruce Grego was the only council member to vote against allowing the move. He said approving the permit transfer would break a delicate balance the city is striking between California and federal regulations.
“In my mind that crosses the line and supporting that is a violation of federal law,” Grego said.
The City Council passed an ordinance regulating medical marijuana dispensaries' operations. It is unfortunate it failed to realize drug dealers are notoriously dishonest. Why would they abide by rules? Under the guise of providing relief to legitimate medical marijuana users, they are conducting a multimillion dollar business, providing marijuana to anyone and everyone who is willing to pay the price.
Council member Bruce Grego, the lone dissenter, should be applauded for seeing through this scheme and insisting on a prohibition of dispensaries.
I am heartened by the Sunday column by Bruce Grego. After the creeping evolution of alleged environmentalism in the Tahoe Basin for over 30 years, it is about time for a basic sanity check. I'm thankful my Nevada neighbors had the clarity of thought to pass Nevada Senate Bill 271 — there is no such clarity in Sacramento.
There was a glimmer of sanity after the Angora fire when people reacted to the obvious misconceptions of the former TRPA general manager and the head of Lahontan Regional Water Control Board — that environmental issues trump all other human endeavor — and embarrassed them into putting the common sense fire department guidance first.
It has been several years, though, and the passage of time has allowed the persistent enviro-creep and dilution of focus with irrelevant “stakeholders” to set in again on other local control issues. Hopefully, attention will remain on the obvious need to re-balance the needs of local people with the needs of Sacramento politicians for power. -Rick Verbanec, Meyers
There has been, over the last several weeks, articles and comments concerning the passage of Nevada Senate Bill 271. The bill seeks, among other things, to reduce control of Tahoe Regional Planning Agency policy by a minority of board members, create deadlines for the completion of the long overdue regional plan and changes the burden of proof concerning court challenges of TRPA's actions. Most importantly, SB 271 calls for Nevada's withdrawal from the compact if these proposed changes are not made within certain time limits.
For those that have opposed SB 271, their post-passage “spin” includes a call that we need to work together (but where have they been all these years?). They contend that amendments to the compact have occurred from time to time (so it's no big deal). They also insist that the action by the Nevada Legislature was too extreme, that the threat of withdrawal is unfair and that it is time to have all “stakeholders” (whoever they are) meet and confer about TRPA's regulations.
The comments by the opposition miss the point of the significance of SB 271 and are designed to minimize the efforts of the proponents.
Certainly, the changes proposed by SB 271 are a good first step in trying to repair the decision-making procedure of the TRPA's governing body and perhaps bring together more groups to reach a consensus regarding the future of the Tahoe basin. The opposition fails to acknowledge the mass injustices caused by TRPA to our citizens and our community.
What is significant about SB 271 is that a grass roots movement made up of many different groups in the basin has been able, for the first time in 43 years, to push back against TRPA. TRPA needs to recognize that they are no longer insulated from the public's opinion as to the reasonableness of their regulations and the manner in which they implement such regulations.
The passage of SB 271 proves that disenfranchised groups can fight back. No more can TRPA rule with impunity while local governments and local citizens protest in the dark. The bill that was passed in Nevada Legislature, and signed by Gov. Sandoval, had wide bipartisan support and was passed with clear majority in both Houses. The city of South Lake Tahoe, Douglas County and Carson City supported the objectives of this Bill. Our Congressman, Rep. Tom McClintock, and State Sen. Gaines also expressed support of SB 271. A coalition has been established and our pattern of success can be repeated. To this end, Douglas County and the city of South Lake Tahoe are planning a joint meeting to discuss matters of mutual interest.
I will not be satisfied if the TRPA continues to stumble around to complete the regional plan. I will not be satisfied if representatives from the California legislature and the governor's office seek to delay changes or fail to actively open a dialogue in good faith with their Nevada counterparts about compact changes. Nor will I be satisfied if all discussions are held behind closed doors as they have been in past compact changes.
I am excited about what has been accomplished and I am optimistic about affecting changes at the TRPA. Clearly, more work needs to be done. At the June 21 City Council meeting, the City Council created an ad hoc committee to directly work with representatives from the legislature and governor's office on this and other issues. I also expect that the City Council will soon retain lobbyists to further these objectives.
A balance between environmental and socioeconomic issues and serious consideration of local needs must become part of TRPA's decision-making if it hopes to exist in the future.
I can only hope that the California legislature and governor's office recognize that the issues are not between the environment versus development, but that issues are between poor planning and smart planning. — Bruce Grego is a South Lake Tahoe Council member.
Nevada and California should come together and split apart, the South Lake Tahoe City Council decided Tuesday.
The council voted 4-1 to send a letter to the Nevada legislature in support of a bill that would withdraw the state from the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency. During the same vote, the council approved the sending of a letter to California legislators encouraging them to take up similar legislation.
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