Assemblywoman wants Tahoe Basin agency revamped

An assemblywoman from Reno wants Nevada lawmakers to renegotiate the bi-state compact that formed the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency in the late 1960s.

The agency's mission is to protect the environment of the Lake Tahoe Basin while overseeing its development.

"It's a compact that's been in place for a long time," said Assemblywoman Sharron Angle, R-Reno. "We haven't looked at the provisions there, and there are some grievances."

The grievances came from a group based in Incline Village called the Committee for the Reasonable Regulation of Lake Tahoe. Bob Wheeler, president of the committee and a real estate broker at Incline, could not be reached for comment, but the group has made public its opposition of scenic ordinances adopted by the TRPA.

The committee has filed a lawsuit related to scenic regulations, which are meant to decrease the visual impact of homes built along the shore of Lake Tahoe. The suit was filed in October and served on the TRPA last month.

Angle, whose district includes portions of Incline Village along the Mount Rose Highway, filed a draft bill regarding the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency on Dec. 3. Angle on Monday said she had not yet received a copy of the bill, one of 12 she sent off to be drafted by state attorneys.

She said its contents will remain private until she introduces it at the Legislature. This likely will be about 10 days after the attorneys deliver it to her office.

Juan Palma, executive director at the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, said he is willing to meet with Angle to discuss her concerns.

"I'm trying to visit with her, but we haven't had a chance to do that," Palma said. "I'd be happy to discuss issues with her ... although I really believe we have a really strong Nevada oversight committee.

"That's where a lot of issues are brought up. They are a good body, a good place, and I really believe that is the right place to do it."

Angle said the Nevada Legislative oversight committee is not the answer.

"These things that will be discussed in the bill have been discussed before by this group with very little satisfaction, I guess," Angle said. "I think it's time to decide to look at the compact and see what the parameters of the mission really were."

The Nevada legislative oversight committee, which monitors actions of the TRPA, met in August at Incline Village to discuss the scenic regulation being proposed by agency. The meeting was packed and committee members left with a list of questions and concerns regarding the scenic issue.

The meeting persuaded Palma to lead negotiations regarding the regulations with a group of interested parties, which included the Committee for the Reasonable Regulation of Lake Tahoe. Negotiations ended abruptly after Palma found out the committee had filed a lawsuit regarding the scenic regulations. Members of the committee said the timing of the suit was to beat a legal deadline.


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