Our View: Hold community meetings in affected communities
February 21, 2008
About three months ago in this space we wrote about community, or to be exact, community enhancement.
Now the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency’s Community Enhancement Program is again on the front burner as the Board of Governors will decide Wednesday which seven development proposals will make the CEP cut. There is a project in Crystal Bay, five in Kings Beach and one in Homewood.
As the CEP states, the aim is to offer leeway ” such as building height and density variances ” to developers who, in turn, bring community-minded, innovative, environmentally conscious projects to the table. The combination, in theory, enhances the communities in which anointed projects are built.
At a North Shore TRPA meeting in November on the seven CEP candidates where some 200 people attended, each one of the projects had its supporters and detractors. On Wednesday, however, the meeting is at the agency’s offices on the South Shore.
That is a problem for the communities that could be affected by the projects. Why is the governing board determining which North and West Shore projects that will be accepted into the Community Enhancement Program at a meeting across the lake?
Because of the South Shore location, affordable housing advocates in Kings Beach are chartering a free shuttle to ensure that the agency leaders hear an often unheard voice of the community. Had such an effort not been put together, would decision makers get the full picture?
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The charter is to “actually let the governing board hear from the people who actually live in Kings Beach,” said Meea Kang of Domus Development, one of the enhancement program candidates. “Whose voices don’t usually get heard at these types of meetings.”
Many supporters and opponents of the CEP projects have the means to travel to the South Shore. Others in our communities do not. Perhaps it should be the TRPA that is chartering the bus. Better yet, hold meetings that affect certain areas of the lake in those communities.
For more information on the shuttle charter call (530) 386-6253. The TRPA Community Enhancement Program is set to be discussed on Feb. 27 at the agency’s South Shore offices at 128 Market St., Stateline, Nev.