Placer County takes first step to create Tahoe government center | SierraSun.com

Placer County takes first step to create Tahoe government center

Jason Shueh
Sierra Sun

TAHOE CITY, Calif. and#8212; In some cases, the economic downturn is a good thing.

Last week, the board of supervisors unanimously approved an option to purchase the Customs House building in Tahoe City, to relocate some of its departments there. The bank-owned property would cost the county $3.4 million and#8212; nearly $2 million less than its recent listing and#8212; a price staff said is significantly below market value, according to a Placer County press release.

and#8220;The fact that this is available for under $300 a square foot is unbelievable,and#8221; said Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery, who represents District 5 and#8212; North Tahoe’s district. and#8220;This is really an opportunity we don’t want to pass up.and#8221;

In the next 90 days, county officials will evaluate the property’s environmental, physical and title conditions, and allow time for necessary approvals from the county and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency; a 10-day escrow would follow.

The 11,400-square foot Customs House, located on North Lake Boulevard, was constructed in 2005. The site was recently listed for sale at $5.2 million, but had an asking price of $3.72 million.

Mary Dietrich, assistant director of facility services for Placer County, said the building would house the local county assessor’s office and land development department and#8212; the assessor’s office lease expires in June, and the county’s lease on its West Shore building, used for the Environmental Health and the Community Development Resource Agency, expires in 2012.

Other county executive offices and the Burton Creek Public Safety departments and#8212; while older Burton Creek facilities undergo reconstruction and#8212; could also be housed there, she said.

Dietrich said the property would only be a temporary solution, as the county seeks to construct a 24,000-square foot government center in Kings Beach, a yet-to-be-planned project that would house a variety of county departments and services, to be completed in 2014 or 2015.

and#8220;The board determined, based on our search, that the best long-term solution was the Kings Beach Town Center project, so direction was given to us to proceed with that project,and#8221; Dietrich said.

When asked if the Kings Beach facility could include office space for the Placer County Sheriff’s Office and#8212; which in 2009, due to finances, closed service centers in Kings Beach, Carnelian Bay and Granite Bay and#8212; Dietrich said while the option has not been ruled out, it is not likely.