My Turn: ‘Whoa’ on the stock trail
The “stock trail” has been getting a good deal of ink lately even though the acrimony and finger pointing has been going on for more than 15 years without result. It is clearly an issue worthy of discussion in a public hearing by the Nevada County Board of Supervisors, where all interested can participate in the discussion and solution.The author of “Red Herrings on the Historic Trail” (My Turn column Sierra Sun Feb. 22) wishes to avoid such a hearing and attempts to present to you, my fellow citizens of Truckee, what my positions are on the matter. The writer, “Co-chairman of the Historic Donner Trail Committee,” located in Stockton, Calif., according to his letterhead, has not discussed with me my findings, thoughts or position on specifics. He must be a mind-reader or know someone in my gym. I intend to save those for the public hearing.However, let me offer a few foundational points on the issue. The writer has claimed that Leigh Fitzpatrick of the Truckee Trails Foundation and I are intent upon two things; “taking” a historic trail and “taking” general access away from the public and gift them to a property owner. Actually, it is the opposite. Mr. Fitzpatrick and I have endeavored to meet the needs of trail enthusiasts, the property owner and address the historical integrity we all value. Besides, we cannot “take” that which we do not “have”.The historic trail – physically every rock, sage and tree – are already Mr. Cadjew’s property. The easement, designated as a “Stock Trail”, as the Sierra Sun editorial (“‘Over our dead bodies’ isn’t a negotiating point” Sierra Sun Feb. 15) accurately pointed out, was for the limited purpose of driving untethered stock. It is not unlike a public utility easement many of us have on our rightfully owned property here in Truckee – the use is limited and specific. Yet we have a property owner working in a collaborative and generous manner within our community to meet the most needs for the most people. In true Truckee fashion, he deserves this public hearing.So who is the property owner anyway? I’m tired of referring to him that way. He is Frank Cadjew, called “Bucky” by his friends. His wife is Julie, but I just call her Mrs. Cadjew. Lifetime Truckee resident Ron Borden ran into me recently and told me “Bucky” got the nickname in elementary school, which back then was today’s Truckee Community Center in town. Bucky was raised in Truckee by his grandmother, and still owns the house he grew up in on High Street. He has a strong and personal attachment to his land at Donner Lake, and is above all, more “local” than many of us have an opportunity of becoming.Let’s get it all out at the hearing. That’s the ball field I was elected to play on, not the newspapers.Ted Owens is the Nevada County District 5 supervisor.
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