Public Comment #26 (Tahoe Area Sierra Club)
Public Comment - Tahoe Donner Marina Appeal September 2013
Public Comment #26 (Tahoe Area Sierra Club)
9/26/2013 8:48:46 AM
9/26/2013 8:48:42 AM
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September 25, 2013 2 <br />The Planning Commission, after extensive deliberation, properly saw through the attempt by the <br />applicant to circumvent the Town of Truckee ordinances, general plan and development code <br />provisions and denied the project. Existing and previous zoning and development code <br />provisions and existing permit provisions do not allow events at this site zoned private residential <br />recreation. To circumvent Planning Staff commercial use criteria, TDA provided the Planning <br />Commission a litany of events they claim they have been holding (in violation of their existing <br />state2 and local permit conditions)—essentially claiming that their success in getting by with past <br />violations now requires the Town to condone future violations. The series of CEQA exemptions <br />for this project have never analyzed these event impacts. The Mitigated Negative Declaration <br />for the proposed project does not analyze impacts from these unpermitted and undisclosed <br />member and commercial events. Nor does it analyze the increased lighting, traffic and other <br />impacts of such events. The Tahoe Donner Association asserts that, because they have gotten <br />away with violating their existing permit conditions, they should be allowed to continue these <br />violations without environmental review and mitigation. This simultaneous seeking of <br />forgiveness and permission would be an egregious violation of the California Environmental <br />Quality Act. <br />This pattern of rolling over past violations and sometimes paying fines seems to be a pattern and <br />practice of the Tahoe Donner Association. In 2010, TDA paid the State Lands Commission <br />penalties for trespass for the expansion of the unpermitted swimming area.3 Absent from that <br />trespass and environmental exemption was analysis and assessment of the impacts from filling in <br />the beach parcel APN 18-340-08, almost doubling its size and rip-rapping the shoreline. The <br />impacts to foraging fish and raptors that feed along these shorelines has not been disclosed or <br />mitigated. State Fish and Wildlife Permits and Clean Water Act permits allowing this discharge <br />into Donner Lake have not been provided. <br />As noted at the April 16th and August 20th Planning Commission hearings, the tripling of the <br />eating area and removal of the lower lawn area, which is used by families, non-motorized boats <br />and paddle boards to access the lake, will create a safety hazard and increase traffic congestion <br />on Donner Pass Road. Existing conditions already create backup and congestion. Reducing the <br />lake access to a 16-17 foot lane will restrict boat launching access to one vehicle at a time.4 This <br />would increase the backup and congestion on Donner Pass Road and create unsafe conditions for <br />pedestrians sharing this access. Existing use of the facility by 40,000 people with over 1,000 <br /> <br /> <br />2 TDA’s existing State Lands permit does not allow commercial events. <br />http://archives.slc.ca.gov/Meeting_Summaries/2010_Documents/12-10-10/Items_and_Exhibits/C36.pdf And TDA’s <br />1974 lease provisions: Provision 13: [Rules and Regulations]] one can see the lease requires TDA to “observe and <br />comply with all rules and regulations now or hereafter promulgated by any agency of the State of California <br />and…at all times take necessary precautions to prevent pollutions and contamination of the environment …. “Any <br />modifications of natural or existing features of the real property described in this lease, including but not limited to <br />the removal of timber and other flora, which are inconsistent with the authorized uses under this lease are expressly <br />prohibited without the prior written consent of the Lessor;..” Provision 14, “….In no event does this lease authorize <br />construction or excavation activity which causes disturbance of any kind in the waters of Donner Lake.” 3 http://archives.slc.ca.gov/Meeting_Summaries/2010_Documents/12-10-10/Voting_Record.pdf <br />4 John Black, TDA developer, “Access is 16 or 17 feet at the narrowest area; four to five feet will be striped for <br />pedestrians, leaving a minimum 12-foot lane for vehicles to pass adjacent to pedestrians.” Page 5 Minutes April 16, <br />2013 Town of Truckee Planning Commission Meeting.
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