Town wants Tahoe Donner homeowners polled on underground utility plan |

Town wants Tahoe Donner homeowners polled on underground utility plan

David Bunker

West Donner Lake residents came to lobby the Truckee Town Council for a assessment district Thursday, while Tahoe Donner Association members, clearly unhappy with the projected uses of their assessment, asked for certain changes. The Tahoe Donner Board of Directors wanted a underground utility study to be funded by next year’s special assessment district surplus, but did not want the Pioneer Trail extension added to the eligible uses.The council added the $135,000 study for eliminating the utility poles by putting all utilities underground as an eligible use. However, for the funding to actually be used for the study, Tahoe Donner would have to conduct a poll to show that the residents supported such a use of the parcel charges.The decision did not allocate any funding, but made the utility study an eligible use of the funding surplus next year. The assessment fund runs a surplus of around $300,000 each year. The Pioneer Trail extension, also referred to as the third Tahoe Donner access, would connect both Bridge Street and Pioneer Trail to Tahoe Donner, allowing direct access to downtown. The road was opposed by the subdivision’s board because members said that it is outside of Tahoe Donner’s service area, and would primarily alleviate traffic on Donner Pass Road. Meanwhile, residents of West Reed Avenue on the western shore of Donner Lake are attempting to form a special assessment district. They lobbied the council for an official vote from residents to fund the town’s rebuilding and maintenance of their roads and drainage.West Reed Avenue is a unique section of road, according to town officials. It has never been maintained by Nevada County or the town of Truckee and is actually a private road that must be maintained privately. A special assessment district would set up the funding to finance town improvements to the section of street. West Reed Avenue residents were divided on the assessment, with some residents voicing their opinion that the town was responsible to maintain the road without an assessment district. Because of the lack of maintenance, the road and drainage system has deteriorated, making flooding a problem in the neighborhood.The council agreed to let the residents take an official vote to see whether there was support for a special assessment district, even though an informal poll showed only a 60 percent level of support, rather than the 67 percent the council had said that they would need to go to a formal vote.