County extends depot deadline; Supes agree to discuss lease with Town of Truckee
The train depot in Truckee, threatened with closure this fall, will remain open at least through the end of the year.
Nevada County officials had planned to close the depot Oct. 31, but the Board of Supervisors agreed in a 3-2 vote Tuesday to extend the deadline to Jan. 16.
County Administrator David Brennan said if it is possible to reach an agreement with the Truckee Town Council to keep the facility open, the two sides would reach it within a month.
$1 a year lease
The county, citing a lack of funds, wants Truckee to lease the county-owned facility for $1 a year and to pay for its upkeep.
The county-owned depot reportedly runs up a $39,000 maintenance bill every year on average, and county officials said they can no longer afford to operate it. Brennan noted Tuesday, however, that the depot also brings in revenue, which results in a net county expense of at least $8,000 a year.
Supervisor Sam Dardick, who represents Truckee, complained that the board’s vote last month to close the depot was made without public comment. He was the lone dissenter in that motion and on Tuesday questioned whether supervisors would have taken such an action in the western county.
He said the depot was as important to Truckee as a library, referring to the outcry from county budget cuts
last year that limited the schedules and services of the county’s library branches.
“If you took action on this end of the county without public input as we did on this one, we would be in big trouble,” Dardick said.
Dardick initially pushed to have the deadline lifted altogether, although he agreed to Supervisor Peter Van Zant’s compromise proposal to extend the deadline to Jan. 16. The two were joined by Chairman Rene Antonson in passing the proposal. Supervisors Karen Knecht and Fran Grattan favored the earlier deadline to motivate Truckee officials to resolve the matter quickly.
“It wasn’t until we said we were serious that everybody got excited,” said Supervisor Karen Knecht. “Maybe we need to keep these folks excited until we have a resolution.”
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