The decision by Placer County to go ahead with the Transit Center on 64 Acres [Tahoe City] – in the face of massive local opposition – begs the question, what happened? In reaching their decision, the supervisors relied heavily on agency endorsements, which included statements from the Forest Service and the Resort Association. For different reasons, this project highlighted that both agencies need to change course.The Forest Service should pursue a consistent land policy in our region. The Forest Service is offering several acres to Placer County for use as a transit center free of charge, yet at the same time it is looking to charge the Town of Truckee several hundred thousand dollars per acre for land the town desperately needs for its infrastructure. Be consistent. Give the 15 acres to the town for its infrastructure needs, or apply the same transfer policy to the 64-Acres tract for the transit center project.The Resort Association needs a publicly, locally elected board. Last week, in addition to the formal Resort Association written endorsements, nearly half the people speaking in favor of the project were RA board members or staff. The RA’s comments were clearly out or touch with the general public at the meeting, and yet these comments carried significant influence with the supervisors. Such influence should have accountability.Moreover, the RA will disburse over $4.2 million in Placer County taxpayer funds this year, which is comparable with other local public agencies like the Truckee Tahoe Airport District and the Tahoe City Public Utility District. Both have elected, five-person boards. The natural tendency of the RA will be to “circle the wagons” in the face of public pressure on this issue. Let’s hope the RA board embraces the need to change course to a five-person elected board – and soon.Paul VatistasTahoe CitySchool chaos?I am writing in regards to the My Turn column, “All in a (hard) day’s work at school.” (Dec. 9 Sierra Sun). I do not have a child, but if that’s the chaos going on in our schools, I see why many people are looking for alternate ways to educate their children.Jim MatheisTruckee
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