East will meet west in future county meeting | SierraSun.com

East will meet west in future county meeting

Nevada County’s politics have long resembled its geography ” east has been separated from west by a steep divide.

But on Oct. 18, government officials from across the county will sit in one room and discuss issues that affect every corner of the county ” growth, transportation and affordable housing.

“It’s a way to bridge that gap that has existed for so long,” said Nevada County Supervisor Chairman Ted Owens, who represents Truckee. “The geography of our county has created that for so long.”

Officials said they hope the meeting will develop strength in numbers when dealing with the state and federal governments.

The meeting, which Owens said he hopes becomes an annual event, will be the first time a wide array of council members, county supervisors and city officials have put their minds together in a formal get-together.

The forum will be a way to exchange innovative ideas, said Owens, since the two sides of the county have had differing amounts of success with each of the three issues.

Truckee Mayor Craig Threshie said the gathering will help overcome the perception of a divided county.

“I think it will, over time, tend to break down that barrier from east to west,” Threshie said.

That unity will provide a way to address the state and federal government as a group, he said.

“Just having the solidarity of showing the three incorporated towns and the county working together for common goals is really unique,” he said.

Gene Haroldsen, city administrator for Grass Valley, said that each side of the county can learn a little from the other side on these three universal issues.

“I think there are a lot of common challenges that we face on both sides of the county,” Haroldsen said.

Haroldsen, who was city manager of Twentynine Palms, in San Bernardino County, before coming to Grass Valley, had been to many of these county meetings in Southern California.

“Hopefully what it does is builds bridges and strengthens the ties between the cities and counties,” he said.

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