Airport draft plan constrains Truckee, local agencies
The new Truckee Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan, as proposed today, will impair seven local agencies’ ability to provide vital services to the Truckee and North Tahoe area, the agencies said in a letter presented to the commission that decides the plan.
“We are collectively concerned that the implementation of the CLUP [Land Use Compatibility Plan], as proposed, will significantly impair our ability to provide the services that are so critical to our growing region,” read the letter, presented to the Foothill Area Land Use Commission (FALUC) by Truckee Community Development Tony Lashbrook at Wednesday’s meeting in Auburn. “In fact, it appears that the CLUP may indirectly limit the very growth that its aircraft operation forecasts are based on.”
The Airport CLUP is a plan that governs land use surrounding the airport, making sure that airport operations and nearby development are compatible for safety and noise.
The Town of Truckee, Tahoe Forest Hospital District, Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District, Tahoe Truckee Sanitation Agency, Truckee Sanitary District, U.S. Forest Service and Truckee Tahoe Unified School District all signed the letter.
Representatives from the almost all of the seven agencies, along with several Truckee citizens, packed the small room.
“There is a reason why there is a lot of people here today,” said Commissioner Steve Enos. “Because there are a lot of mutually competing and overlapping interests.”
Lashbrook asked for another opportunity for the agencies to meet with the consultant on the technical issues of the plan.
“We believe it is important for changes to be made before we get to the formal review process,” said Lashbrook, who asked the commission to direct Airport Planner Ken Brody, “to take one more stab at the issues.”
Whether the commission will allow the agencies and the planning consultant to meet on technical issues, will be decided at a later meeting.
The commission decided to form a committee of three members Rex Bloomfield, Kathy Sands and Peter Van Zant to organize the issues, making it easier for the commission to make decisions on the CLUP.
One member of the audience questioned the idea of having a private committee meeting regarding the CLUP, and urged the commission to conduct all business in a public, agendized forum.
“I think this gives the appearance of negotiating in the dark without public participation,” said Lou Reinkens, “I think that is why you have to have the light of day on this issue.”
But the commission assured everyone that the committee would only organize issues and everything would be decided in an announced, public commission meeting.
The anticipated June adoption of the plan will likely be postponed, said Sierra Planning Organization President Betty Riley, who said she is struggling to finance the CLUP an unfunded requirement for the commission and find time for staff to work on the plan.
Commissioner Rex Bloomfield supported the extension, and urged the commission not to rush the plan.
“I would like to see us do a good job with this CLUP,” Bloomfield said. “I don’t want to see seven agencies questioning our rush to judgment.”
There are several unresolved questions that could have large impacts on development, that were discussed lightly at the meeting, but will likely be controversial topics when they come up for decision.
The FALUC has authority over the cutoff date for the “grandfathering” of development proposals. Proposals in all stages of the approval process proposal under review, EIR under review, EIR approved, projects under construction will be affected by where the commission sets the cutoff line. The CLUP, by rule, does not govern existing development. The Martis Valley Community Plan, which has been approved but is under litigation, will likely be the centerpiece of this “grandfathering” decision.
Another question, brought up by Rex Bloomfield, is mitigation of the plan’s impacts.
“If they’re going to be giving up some type of zoning, maybe some type of compensation needs to be given,” said Bloomfield.
The next action by the commission will be to adopt an official draft CLUP, which then will be available for public comment. The current document before the commission and public is an unofficial consultant’s draft. However, the FALUC must first wade through all of the public comment and discuss the specifics of the consultant’s document.
“This is not over with by any stretch of the imagination,” said Commissioner Peter Van Zant.
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