Lending a hand to our own will only become more important
The governor of California is proposing billion-dollar, across-the-board-budget cuts for 2008-09, home equity is shrinking and special districts in the area have and are looking to homeowners to supplement their needs.Add the possibility of statewide funding cuts with the reality of deflating home values layered with the potential of increased property tax assessments and its enough to drive a resident of the Golden State into despair. Close your eyes and you might open them amidst the 1970s tax revolts, oil embargoes and drought. But it is 2008, and at least were staring at wonderfully deep snowpack, unlike this time last year when it looked as though drought was going to make an extended stay. Considering news of foreclosures, layoffs and whatnot, Id drop in the pestilence and locust reference here, but that might be getting a little carried away.Unlike the 70s, however, there are bright spots poking through the gathering gloom, and those are the non-profits and organizations that go out of their way to help fund them.We continually marvel at the altruistic nature of the Truckee-North Tahoe community. And in increasingly foreboding economic times, that generosity is and will be crucial.In the last month or so, weve had press release after press release come through the newsroom in which foundations, clubs and businesses are actively giving out funding and offering opportunities at fundraising.One example is Truckee Noon Rotarys Crab Feed event. Each year a non-profit group is selected to host the event auction to raise funds for its organization. Last year, Homewoods Wildlife Inc. ran the auction, raising $10,000 to support its cause. This year, Turning Point, a Truckee organization that works with the physically challenged population, was selected.Meanwhile, the Downtown Truckee Wine, Walk andamp; Shop is seeking beneficiary request applications from area non-profits. Last year, $5,000 was donated to the Truckee High School music program. Past beneficiaries have included the Truckee-Tahoe Humane Society, Lake Tahoe Music Festival and InnerRythms.Right now, the Lahontan Community Foundation is looking for projects in the Truckee-North Tahoe area to support. Since its creation in 2002, the foundation has awarded more than $500,000 to non-profits in the region. And in December, the Truckee Tahoe Community Foundation Queen of Hearts Women’s Fund gave away $50,000 to two area non-profits.Weve probably missed other noteworthy examples of how our community helps itself. But as the state slashes and local assessments mount, lending a hand to our own will only become more important.Jamie Bate is the editor of the Sierra Sun. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.