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Placer County District 5 Newsletter | September 10

Placer County District 5 Newsletter | September 10

LABOR DAY HAS COME AND GONE, BUT FIRE SEASON IS FAR FROM OVER!

Over 100 years ago, our Country began recognizing the first Monday in September as Labor Day, paying tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers. Without a doubt, the last two years have been difficult for our workers and businesses in Placer County, nationally, and beyond. During such trying times, the Labor Day holiday is well deserved. Thanks to each and every one of you who have not only contributed and achieved for our communities’ success, but who have also worked hard to stay positive throughout these challenges.

In addition, Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer. And while summer comes to a close, I want to remind you that our fire season is FAR from being over. Not only have we seen devastating wildfires in our own County, but we are also watching several wildfires race through our surrounding counties, communities, and forests. Until we begin to see some rain and snow, I will continue to push out wildfire information. Let’s work together to keep Placer County — as well as everyone affected — educated, informed, prepared, and SAFE!

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


9/11 REMEMBRANCE AT THE LIBERTY TREE

Placer County officials are inviting the community to join them at a 9/11 20-year anniversary event tomorrow, September 11 at 9am at the Placer County Fire Station #180 in Auburn. LEARN MORE


WILDFIRE UPDATES

BRIDGE FIRE UPDATE | The Bridge Fire under the Foresthill Bridge on the Auburn side of Placer County has been active for 4 days, is currently at 411 acres and 75% contained. As of September 6, we are thankful to say all evacuation orders and warnings have been lifted. LEARN MORE

CALDOR FIRE UPDATE | The Caldor Fire in El Dorado an Amador Counties has been active for 26 days, is currently at 218,459 acres and 53% contained. While the Caldor did not burn in any area of Placer County, its impacts on the region were immense. The smoke-filled air deterred many from visiting our tourism destinations and some businesses are reporting extreme consequences as a result. In addition, the air-quality readings were unprecedented and dangerous through the Sierras and much of the foothills. Our Placer County staff has and continues to assist El Dorado County staff throughout this fire event. LEARN MORE


FIRE SEASON IS FAR FROM OVER!
CREATE CONFIDENCE IN YOUR OWN PREPARATIONS

Fall is still fire season, especially with the extreme drought. Please continue to be fire safe and vigilant with your actions and evacuation plans. SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERT — it is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

Be prepared, know your evacuation routes, and listen to law enforcement! Please remember evacuations are a very coordinated effort between all law enforcement, fire districts, Caltrans, and our county roads — it’s a significant undertaking and planning between the agencies is extensive. In the event of an evacuation, please remain calm, follow the instructions of the emergency personnel, and have an action plan ready before the fire strikes. Have your kit ready to go for every family member, know at least two ways out of your neighborhood, and remember to check all your apps, alerts and social media pages — officials will constantly be pushing out messages immediately and as fast as they can. Don’t wait for the evacuation order — if you feel threatened, leave — and leave as soon as the evacuation is recommended by any officials. Depending on where the fire is located, law enforcement will determine which evacuation route is best, and officials will be placed in strategic areas to direct people where to go. Please don’t stop to try and ask questions — this will delay everyone’s evacuation — trust they are directing you a safe way to get as many people out as quickly as possible. LEARN MORE

IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:


DISASTER UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE NOW AVAILABLE

Residents of Lassen, Nevada, Placer, and Plumas Counties who have been impacted by wildfires that started in July and August 2021 can now file for federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA). The California Employment Development Department (EDD) administers these benefits, which are available to workers, business owners, and self-employed individuals who lost their jobs or businesses, or had their work hours reduced due to the ongoing wildfires. For full details, see the EDD news release regarding available disaster benefits for those impacted by recent wildfires, CLICK HERE.

 


COVID-19 UPDATE

The Delta surge has resulted in record numbers of COVID-related hospitalizations and is leaving our local hospitals with less room to absorb more patients requiring hospitalization.

The bottom line: the surge is very real here in Placer County. As of today, Placer County reported 205 confirmed cases in the hospital with 53 confirmed cases in the ICU. In addition, our 7-day test positivity rate was 8.9% with our 7-day average daily case rate coming in at 34.9 cases per 100K — far surpassing the surge we experienced last winter. Visit the Placer Covid-19 Dashboard for more information on current stats.

To preserve critical infrastructure that serves all, including hospitals and schools, Placer County Public Health is advising residents regardless of vaccination status to use high-quality masks while in all indoor settings to protect against the highly infectious Delta variant. LEARN MORE

California COVID-19 Dashboard | Placer County COVID-19 Dashboard


LABOR UNION NEGOTIATIONS WITH OUR DEPUTY SHERIFFS’ ASSOCIATION (DSA)

Over the last three years Placer County and the labor union (DSA) that represents our non-management Sheriff’s employees, have been in negotiations trying diligently to address the escalation of salaries and benefits which is outpacing the growth in revenues. The Board has steadfastly supported our Sheriff’s budget and in the past increased special pays to ensure that our deputies are compensated at the top in the region. Unfortunately, those special pays are not included in comparisons used for salary adjustments and the compounding impacts have created a financial condition that is not sustainable.

The labor negotiation process while extremely lengthy, includes legal protections to ensure the employees’ rights. The County has been proceeding through the process, following all required legal steps which have now resulted in the Board’s decision next Tuesday on whether to resolve the impasse.

I want to continue to assure you that there is NO proposal by the Board of Supervisors to cut the Sheriff’s budget or their salaries. In fact, our Board and our community has strongly supported our law enforcement professionals by increasing contributions to the Sheriff’s budget on average 8.8% annually over the past twenty years. Part of that increase includes annual salary increases for deputies, driven by the Measure F formula, averaging 3.8% each year over the past twenty years. As a result, Deputy Sheriff annual salary increases have significantly outpaced both general County employees’ annual increases and the Consumer Price Index for the last 10 years. For reference, please see the 5-year graph and the 10-year chart below. These salary increases combined with all other special pays and benefits has lead to our deputies’ TOTAL compensation being 20% above the surrounding jurisdictions.

The Board’s goal is to ensure that we are protecting your tax dollars by anticipating and planning for the long-term financial implications of top-tier law enforcement services. These plans must also consider the compounding of pensions that are most often longer than years of service. Our responsibility is to make sure that we as taxpayers can afford these future cost escalations. The voters’ enactment of the Placer County Charter in 1980 vested the Board with responsibility to negotiate on behalf of the taxpayers and thus superseded the Measure F formula enacted in 1977. Until now, the Board voluntarily continued to follow the formula and even chose to enhance the benefits when the formula-driven salary adjustments weren’t enough to ensure our recruitment and retention of staff. However, as discussed above, the Board must address the current and future economic situation created by Measure F.

The proposal before us now is to look at the total compensation, including all the special pays and pension benefits, to ensure that we stay competitive but also stay within what you can afford.

As I stated at the Board meeting, our community should be proud — we have the best, we want the best, and we will continue to pay the best. I encourage you to reach out with any additional comments or questions.


CALIFORNIA GUBERNATORIAL RECALL ELECTION | SEPTEMBER 14

The 2021 California gubernatorial recall election is a special election on whether to recall Governor Gavin Newsom from office, and if removed, to select a candidate to replace him for the remainder of his term, which ends in January 2023. LEARN MORE

 

 

 

 

 


PLACER TOURISM GRANT PROGRAM

Projects that implement the Tourism Master Plan and benefit the North Lake Tahoe community may have an opportunity to receive funding with Placer County’s 2021-22 Tourism Master Plan grant program. LEARN MORE

 

 

 

 

 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 30

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 30

CREATE CONFIDENCE IN YOUR OWN PREPARATIONS

The Caldor fire is leaving all of us worried about the safety of our homes and families, but it’s important to remember that at this point, it remains 15-20 miles from Placer County’s border. Our Placer County Sheriff’s Office, Placer County Office of Emergency Services, Cal Fire and Placer County Fire Department are working alongside all of the other agencies involved in the incident and coordinating constantly. I was able to tour the front lines this afternoon with our Cal Fire Unit Chief Brian Estes and can assure you that there are tremendous resources being used to fight this fire. It is tragic to see the fire spotting over Echo Summit and across Highway 50, but for now residents of Placer are not part of the immediate threat.

The best way to use the energy created by this anxiety is to create confidence in your own preparations. There are four basic steps to consider:

  1. Register for Placer Alerts
  2. Have an evacuation plan
  3. Prepare your home and your property
  4. Evacuate wisely

It’s important to remember that no one can create a step by step plan to handle every possible disaster situation, but by making as many reasonable preparations as possible in advance of an emergency and practicing them you can make yourself, your family, and your home safer.

Preparing for a disaster often seems overwhelming. The most important step is to start from where ever you are. Clicking on any of the links is a great start!

•••

I am providing you this information from the Placer Sheriff’s Office:

We continue to field many questions about the potential for evacuations along the Placer County side of Lake Tahoe. At this time we do not anticipate any portion of Placer County being evacuated. The fire’s edge is still between 15-20 miles from the county line at Tahoma. We are monitoring closely and will send updates as they apply. Click the links below for updates and ways to stay informed.”

[PLACER COUNTY SHERIFF’S FACEBOOK PAGE]

For the latest updates on the Caldor Fire, please CLICK HERE.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:


WITH FIRE SEASON COMES SMOKE!

If you can see or smell smoke, avoid all unnecessary outdoor activities, especially if you are in an area where visibility is greatly reduced.

Here are recommended ways to reduce your smoke exposure:

 


Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

District 5 Update | August 26

District 5 Update | August 26

COVID-19 HEALTH WARNING
THE SURGE IS VERY REAL HERE IN PLACER COUNTY

Last Friday, Sutter Roseville Medical Center experienced their busiest day in their history, driven by the surge in Covid-19 cases. Placer County’s Director of Health and Human Services Dr. Rob Oldham provided the Board with an update indicating the situation from hospital executives in the region is “dire”.

The bottom line: the surge is very real here in Placer County. As of Tuesday, Placer County reported 204 confirmed cases in the hospital with 45 confirmed cases in the ICU. In addition, our 7-day test positivity rate was 10.9% with our 7-day average daily case rate coming in at 31 cases per 100K – far surpassing the surge we experienced last winter. Visit the Placer County Covid-19 Dashboard for more information on current stats.

On Monday, Chair of the Board Robert Weygandt and I toured Sutter Roseville Medical Center with their entire management team. Let me paint a picture of what we witnessed first-hand: the lobby and hallways were full of non-critical patients waiting to be seen because all their rooms were full to capacity because with Covid-19 patients. In addition, the challenges of the very dedicated and tremendously overworked medical staff were clearly evident and expressed over and over throughout our visit.

Touring Sutter Roseville: Dr. Rob Oldham, Brian Alexander-CEO Sutter Health Roseville, myself, and Chair of the Board of Supervisors Robert Weygandt.

 

The Delta variant is very different, much more contagious and our hospitals are seeing younger patients admitted. The staff indicated that stays of those admitted are longer and therefore beds are full without space for others who need them. Nearly 90% of those currently hospitalized with Covid are unvaccinated, and of the remaining 10% of patients who had been vaccinated, most had known pre-existing conditions. Vaccines are proven to work to prevent illness and reduce the severity of illness. They are readily available, free of charge. If you’re not already vaccinated, I encourage you to CLICK HERE to schedule your vaccination appointment today!

Please follow Placer County’s guidelines and new warnings below. Wear a mask to not only protect yourself – but your family, friends, and our entire community. Please be mindful – let’s work together to keep our kids attending school in person and Placer County strong and healthy.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


SUTTER ROSEVILLE MEDICAL CENTER

Brian Alexander | CEO

Like other health systems, we are seeing a significant rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations, which is requiring us to activate components of our surge plan as we did during previous surges. We’ve learned much about this virus over the past 18 months, including how to respond when there is a rise in admissions. While the region is seeing some of the highest hospitalization rates to date, we are prepared to further adjust operations so that we can continue to care for patients. Our teams are highly trained and it is extraordinary to see them continue to respond with professionalism and compassion.

While we remain prepared to manage the increase in patients, we need community members to understand the important role they can play in reducing the rate of transmission: follow public health guidance on masking and physical distancing, and for those eligible to get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best step we can take to put this pandemic behind us.

Finally, please don’t delay in seeking care. Sutter network hospitals, walk-in care clinics, and medical foundation offices are open and providing high-quality care to patients. Safety precautions at Sutter hospitals remain in effect to help protect the health of patients, clinicians and staff, which includes some visitor limitations, universal masking and requiring physical distancing where possible.


KAISER PERMANENTE, ROSEVILLE

Kimberly Menzel | Senior Vice President and Area Manager

This past week, our Roseville Medical Center surpassed the daily peak from last winter’s surge for the number of patients with COVID-19 admitted to our hospital. Based on each of the prior surges, we anticipate hospitalizations will continue to increase over the next three weeks in Placer County.

Roughly 90% of the patients with COVID-19 receiving care in the Kaiser Permanente Roseville hospital—including those in intensive care—are unvaccinated. It is clear vaccination against COVID-19 prevents most infections and reduces severe illness from this virus, and reduces the need for hospitalizations. Widespread vaccination in conjunction with health and safety protocols such as social distancing and mask wearing is our best hope of stopping this current surge and ultimately ending the pandemic.

We urge everyone to help end the pandemic and provide relief to our hospitals, physicians, nurses, and care teams by immediately getting the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine, free of charge to all.


NEWS RELEASE: PLACER COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUES NEW COVID-19 HEALTH WARNING

AUBURN, California – The Delta surge has resulted in record numbers of COVID-related hospitalizations this week and is leaving our local hospitals with less room to absorb more patients requiring hospitalization. Hospitals in Placer County are providing critical care in areas not typically designed for that purpose, report a high level of acuity in their patients, and are experiencing strains on their workforce. COVID patients occupy nearly one third of licensed beds, a higher share relative to hospitals in other communities.

Beyond hospitalizations, cases in school settings are rising too among students and staff, resulting in increasing numbers of classroom outbreaks that, in some cases, have led to the temporary cancellation of in-person instruction. School-related cases were uncommon and largely isolated with previous COVID-19 variants, yet early signs point to more students and staff who are turning up positive as a result of a COVID exposure.

To preserve critical infrastructure that serves all, including hospitals and schools, Placer County Public Health is advising residents regardless of vaccination status to use high-quality masks while in all indoor settings to protect against the highly infectious Delta variant.

“Our individual actions during this Delta surge are impacting everyone, including those seeking health care or in-person instruction,” said Interim Health Officer Dr. Rob Oldham. “Placer County Public Health stands behind organizations who take precautions to support our community’s efforts to preserve key infrastructure such as implementing universal indoor masking, which is much less disruptive than other restrictions experienced during the pandemic.”

To provide a sufficient layer of protection, residents are also advised to use higher quality masks, like a surgical or KN95 mask. Higher quality masks were largely in short supply during the beginning of the pandemic but are now more readily available at local drug stores or online.

For those who are 12 and older and unvaccinated, talk to your doctor right away about questions you have about COVID-19 vaccines. Most patients currently hospitalized locally for COVID-19, including those in the intensive care unit, have not received a COVID-19 vaccination. While vaccination may not fully prevent infection, it’s one of the best tools we have to reduce the risk of severe illness and hospitalization. Please visit myturn.ca.gov to schedule your appointment today.


PLACER EXPERIENCING URGENT SHORTAGE OF POLL WORKERS

With just weeks remaining until the September 14 California gubernatorial recall election, the Placer County Elections Office is facing a shortage of volunteers to serve in precincts throughout the county. READ MORE

 

 

 


CALIFORNIA GUBERNATORIAL RECALL ELECTION SEPTEMBER 14

Registered voters in Placer County should start checking their mailboxes for the September 14 California gubernatorial recall election voter information guide and vote-by-mail ballots. READ MORE
 

 

 


 

Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Director Lindsay Romack: lromack@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

Temporary Assistant District Aide Judy Friedman: jfriedman@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 24

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 24

WILDFIRE & SMOKE UPDATES FOR THE TAHOE BASIN

While there are currently no active fires burning within Placer County, the smoke and air quality conditions, specifically in the Lake Tahoe Basin, have been devastating. Most of the smoke you are seeing and breathing is coming from the Caldor Fires (El Dorado County) and the Dixie Fire (Butte County), bringing our area relentless and unprecedented drift smoke from both directions. Please note that Placer County Public Health and Placer County Air Pollution Control District have extended the joint air quality advisory through Friday, August 27. CLICK HERE for more information on air quality and smoke including ways you can reduce your smoke exposure.

While there are no current evacuation orders or warnings issued to the Lake Tahoe area – these fires and the resulting smoke are yet another unfortunate and humbling reminder that wildfire can strike at anytime and anywhere – we MUST be prepared. The time is NOW to plan, prepare, stay aware and know your evacuation routes. Please CLICK HERE to view Cal Fire’s wildfire evacuation guide. I also encourage you to visit the CalFire website for information on ways to prepare for wildfire including; getting your to-go kit ready, creating a wildfire action plan, and preparing now.

SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERT – it is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

Please be vigilant with your actions, stay safe, and keep your thoughts with everyone who is currently dealing with wildfire firsthand. I also want to extend my utmost appreciation to the firefighter crews and emergency personnel for their bravery and hard work while they are actively fighting these fires.

Below is a letter I received on behalf of TRPA, providing a lot of important information and resources regarding the Caldor fire. Please share this information with community members, friends, and family.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


LETTER SENT ON BEHALF OF TAHOE REGIONAL PLANNING AGENCY

The Caldor Fire has now been burning for a little over a week and the Incident Command team anticipates it will continue to burn and impact air quality for some time. As of 7am on August 24 it has burned 117,704 acres and is at 9% containment with 2119 personnel on the fire. These numbers are updated daily at 7am and 7pm on the incident command site, and is also where they post any updates throughout the day.

To offer some perspective, so far in 2021 we’ve seen over 1,570,000 acres burned in California alone. That’s a 42% increase from last year in CA during the same period. We are collecting the most current data for Nevada this season, which makes these numbers even more staggering. Climate change is propelling all of us towards a sobering and smokier reality.

Here are some highlights from the August 23 5pm community briefing and news from throughout the day:

  • Boundaries: The Southwest corner (heel) is seeing good progress. (The south and west perimeter is toward the foothill communities). The spot fire north of Hwy 50 near Kyburz is spreading west, but not moving north or east. (North and east spread is toward Tahoe). There’s a new spot fire growing rapidly near the head (Northeast corner) that’s about 100 acres, but they anticipate the fire behavior should calm down in the evening. On the west flank, the fire has not crossed Sly Park Rd.
  • Evacuations: There have been no evacuation orders or warnings in South Lake Tahoe (no change). While we are all concerned, this is good news that there is no imminent change for Tahoe’s communities.
  • Weather: The weather is predicted to be similar to today through Wednesday. After that, winds decrease considerably and temperatures increase, which will likely cause the smoke to be trapped low in an inversion layer well into the weekend meaning continued smoke impacts.
  • Air quality: Air quality is forecasted to be poor to hazardous throughout the week, with westerly winds continuing to push wildfire smoke with degraded air quality into the Sierra and western Nevada. Hazardous smoke is expected as long as there are active fire and fire runs, probably for some time. CLICK HERE for information about the smoke outlook for the region.
  • Closures: California State Parks has closed DL Bliss State Park, Rubicon Trail, Ed Z’berg Sugar Pine Point State Park, and Emerald Bay State Park. The Conservancy has closed Van Sickle Bi-State Park and Tahoe Pines. There has been an additional forest closure along a portion of Humboldt-Toiyabe in California along the PCT and TRT.
  • Caldor Fire Structure Status: View the GIS map showing boundary and showing structural damage and fire boundaries

There are a lot of uncertainties right now, but one thing that is sure is that the incident command team will be planning for days and weeks ahead depending on fire conditions. This looks like a very long slog. All partners are aligned in getting everyone back in their homes safely and as soon as possible. If you’d like to donate to support those who have or will be affected, CALfire recommends donating to the local American Red Cross. El Dorado County is part of the Sacramento Capital Region Chapter of the American Red Cross (ARC).

Stay informed and please stay safe,
Joanne S. Marchetta, Executive Director
Tahoe Regional Planning Agency


USDA FOREST SERVICE TEMPORARILY CLOSES NINE NORTHERN CALIFORNIA NATIONAL FORESTS FOR PUBLIC SAFETY

To better provide public and firefighter safety due to extreme fire conditions throughout northern California, and strained firefighting resources throughout the country, the USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region is announcing a temporary closure of nine National Forests. This closure will be effective through September 6, 2021 at 11:59pm. “Fires are running very quickly due to the drought conditions, dry fuels, and winds. This makes initial attack and containment very difficult and is even more challenging with strained resources who are battling more than 100 large fires across the country,” said Regional Forester Jennifer Eberlien. “We do not take this decision lightly and understand how this impacts people who enjoy recreating on the National Forests. These temporary closures are necessary to ensure public and firefighter safety, as well as reduce the potential for new fire starts. I want to thank the public for your patience during this challenging situation.” READ MORE


EASTERN PLACER TOWN HALL | VIDEO LINK 

Thanks to everyone that attended the Virtual Eastern Placer County Town Hall on Thursday, August 12. We received a great turnout with a lot of informational presentations on important topics including updates on Covid & vaccine, public agencies, housing and more. If you were unable to attend or simply want to revisit one of these topics, please visit the link below to watch the recording.  


UPCOMING BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING | AUGUST 31

Please join us next Tuesday, August 31 for the Placer County Board of Supervisors meeting at the Domes in Auburn at 9am – both in person and virtual attendance is welcome. The agenda will be posted HERE once it is available. One agenda item to note is the public hearing to consider an extension of an Urgency Ordinance Establishing a Moratorium on the issuance of New Short-Term Rental Permits Pursuant to Placer County Code Chapter 9, Article 9.42. READ NOTICE


GROVE STREET SIGNAL | DID IT HELP?
In order to try new ways to alleviate traffic in North Lake Tahoe, we installed a temporary traffic light at Grove Street and state Route 28 in Tahoe City. This temporary pilot project is intended to help control heavy pedestrian crossings that affect traffic every summer. Now we want your feedback! Did it help? Should we make it permanent? Help us make an informed decision on the future of the program by filling out a quick survey today! TAKE SURVEY

 

 


POLL WORKERS NEEDED IN NORTH LAKE TAHOE

The Placer County Elections Office still needs poll workers in North Lake Tahoe for the upcoming September 14 California gubernatorial recall election. Poll workers who are bilingual in Spanish are in special need, too. A training class for election poll workers will be held in North Lake Tahoe on September 9. LEARN MORE

 

 


CALIFORNIA GUBERNATORIAL RECALL ELECTION | SEPTEMBER 14

Registered voters in Placer County should start checking their mailboxes for the Sept. 14 California gubernatorial recall election voter information guide and vote-by-mail ballots. LEARN MORE

 

 

 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 6

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | August 6

A DEVASTATING REMINDER, BE PREPARED FOR WILDFIRE!

As many of you know, the River Fire, which started Wednesday, grew very quickly, and destroyed homes in the Colfax area and beyond. My heart goes out to each and every individual who has already lost their homes or had property impacts. I was able to get to Colfax and meet with the Mayor Pro Tem, the City Manager, Cal Fire, and the Placer County Sheriff’s office a few hours after the start of the fire. Seeing the tremendous resources in action from the air and the ground was reassuring. Thousands of people were evacuated, 3,400 homes threatened, but fortunately at this point only 88 structures were destroyed. I want to extend the utmost appreciation to our CalFire crews who reacted quickly, called in tremendous aerial and on-the-ground equipment and crews, and limited the growth of the fire quickly. Their efforts saved us from a far worse outcome. In addition, I’d like to thank our Placer County Sheriff’s staff who worked quickly to evacuate residents and ensure their safety. The following video shares the difficult conditions firefighters have been contending with over the past 24 hours. WATCH VIDEO

This is a humbling reminder that wildfire can strike at anytime and anywhere – we MUST be prepared. The time is NOW to plan, prepare, stay aware and know your evacuation routes. Please CLICK HERE to view Cal Fire’s wildfire evacuation guide. I also encourage you to visit the CalFire website for information on ways to prepare for wildfire including; getting your to-go kit ready, creating a wildfire action plan, and preparing now.

For current information on the River Fire, including ways you can volunteer or donate, please CLICK HERE.

Please be vigilant with your actions, stay safe and keep your thoughts with everyone who is currently dealing with wildfire firsthand. Our Placer County community, near and far, will need to come together to help each other through this devastating time.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor

 


EASTERN PLACER COUNTY TOWN HALL
THURSDAY, AUGUST 12 @ 6PM

As we close in on the last few weeks of a busy summer season, Placer County staff and the Board of Supervisors have continued to advance pilot efforts to address the impacts of increased visitation to our Eastern Placer communities and to seek solutions to our workforce housing needs. These issues and impacts are by no means unique to our region, in fact resort communities throughout our country have struggled with similar problems. Researching solutions that have been effective in other jurisdictions has allowed us the opportunity to learn from the best practices and customize efforts in our area.

County staff and I feel it’s extremely important to provide our community with all the information and resources you might need and we invite you to join us on Thursday, August 12 at 6pm for a Virtual Eastern Placer County Town Hall. We have prepared a robust agenda with a focus on the many efforts we are undertaking to address workforce housing.

[VIEW AGENDA]

[ZOOM LINK]


Other Updates Underway

GROVE STREET SIGNAL

After decades of discussing a variety of options, Placer County is piloting a signal that would control and make pedestrian crossings safer at this key intersection. Pedestrian activity at the Grove Street intersection has been the cause of significant traffic delays in past summers. The pilot project is being monitored and evaluated during our peak busy summer season and the results will be checked against data while it was an unregulated crosswalk. One of the issues that has been identified, is the delay due to allowing left hand turns out of Grove Street. Adjusting the timing at the signals may help but won’t eliminate delays. The study will look at traffic volumes with and without signal and how those volumes may translate into the extent of delays folks are experiencing. We appreciate the feedback and experience that many of you are providing. Staff will evaluate and discuss future efforts at a fall NTRAC meeting. LEARN MORE

SHORT TERM RENTAL MORATORIUM

For a number of years, short term rentals have been a growing concern in Eastern Placer County. During the fall of 2019 a new ordinance and permitting process was established and was implemented in January of 2020. The effectiveness of this ordinance and its implementation are being evaluated. There is also significant documentation available indicating that short term rentals are increasing housing values in resort communities. This moratorium is a “time out” while information is collected as to how best to balance our community’s needs and demands. We are not the first region to address these growing issues. Many, if not most, communities throughout the country have begun restricting, regulating, instituting caps, and other efforts in order to preserving community character and needs. Housing is extremely difficult and costly to build. Shortages for workforce housing are evident even in larger communities but resort communities are suffering the worst. Finding the right balance is critical to the well-being of our community. We will be seeking further input and collecting data for the discussion of how to address these issues. LEARN MORE

PLACER EXPANDS TART CONNECT THROUGH THE WINTER SEASON

The Placer County Board of Supervisors approved $530,000 in transient occupancy tax funds to expand the TART Connect on-demand transit pilot program for the winter season. The funding will allow continued TART Connect service from December through April 2022, and will expand service into the Cedar Flat and Carnelian Bay area neighborhoods, now covering all Placer communities along Lake Tahoe. LEARN MORE

 


JOINT AIR QUALITY ADVISORY

Placer County Public Health and Placer County Air Pollution Control District have issued an air quality advisory in part due to the potential for wildfire smoke impacts from the River Fire in Nevada and Placer counties. Additionally, the public should be prepared for a strong potential for poor air quality conditions through Sunday, August 8, from smoke from wildfires elsewhere in northern California. This air quality advisory is issued based on the National Weather Service, Sacramento forecast of a wind shift to northerly winds that would bring smoke into our area. LEARN MORE


POLL WORKERS NEEDED IN NORTH LAKE TAHOE

The Placer County Elections Office still needs poll workers in North Lake Tahoe for the upcoming September 14 California gubernatorial recall election. Poll workers who are bilingual in Spanish are in special need, too. A training class for election poll workers will be held in North Lake Tahoe on September 9. LEARN MORE

 

 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Newsletter | August 3

Placer County District 5 Newsletter | August 3

AUGUST IS HERE, ENJOY THE END OF OUR BUSY SUMMER.

As we begin to wind down from another hot and busy summer, I want to thank everyone for doing their part to keep Placer County safe. There are so many ways each of you have contributed towards a successful summer, from preparing for wildfires to getting your COVID vaccination and traveling responsibly to supporting our local businesses. Let’s continue to work together to keep the momentum going and help provide Placer County a healthy, prosperous future.

Below you will find some news, updates and resources I thought you would find informative. As always, I encourage you to reach out to my office if you have additional comments, questions, or concerns. Thank you for taking the time to connect and for giving me the opportunity to serve you.

~ Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


WILDFIRE & AIR QUALITY UPDATES

FIRE SEASON IS FAR FROM OVER!

Fall is still fire season, especially with the extreme drought. Please continue to be fire safe and vigilant with your actions and evacuation plans. SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERT – it is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

PLAN, PREPARE, STAY AWARE + EVACUATION

Be prepared, know your evacuation routes, and listen to law enforcement! Please remember evacuations are a very coordinated effort between all law enforcement, fire districts, Caltrans, and our county roads – it’s a significant undertaking and planning between the agencies is extensive. In the event of an evacuation, please remain calm, follow the instructions of the emergency personnel, and have an action plan ready before the fire strikes. Have your kit ready to go for every family member, know at least two ways out of your neighborhood, and remember to check all your apps, alerts and social media pages – officials will constantly be pushing out messages immediately and as fast as they can. Don’t wait for the evacuation order – if you feel threatened, leave – and leave as soon as the evacuation is recommended by any officials. Depending on where the fire is located, law enforcement will determine which evacuation route is best, and officials will be placed in strategic areas to direct people where to go. Please don’t stop to try and ask questions – this will delay everyone’s evacuation – trust they are directing you a safe way to get as many people out as quickly as possible. LEARN MORE

IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:

WITH FIRE SEASON COMES SMOKE!

When Placer County is impacted, an air quality advisory will be issued to notify the public of the intermittent potential for poor air quality conditions from smoke from wildfires in several other northern California counties. If you can see or smell smoke, avoid all unnecessary outdoor activities, especially if you are in an area where visibility is greatly reduced.

Here are recommended ways to reduce your smoke exposure:


COVID + Vaccination Updates

It is well known that the Delta variant is posing challenges across the country, including here in Placer County. The variant spreads rapidly among unvaccinated people and threatens some of our most vulnerable residents. The vaccine is proving to be some of the safest and most effective in history, so if you have not already, I encourage you to please get vaccinated to protect yourself, your family and your community. Especially with schools preparing to re-open with full-time in-person instruction, it is imperative we are taking all the necessary steps and precautions to keep our kids in school.

Dr. Robert Oldham sent out a letter last Wednesday to the Placer County Board of Supervisors with an update on covid in Placer County including case rates, hospitalizations, deaths from covid, vaccination rates and information, mask guidelines and more. READ LETTER

Here is a snapshot of today’s Placer stats:

  • 7-day rate per 100K: 17.3
  • 7-day positivity rate: 8.0%
  • COVID-19 hospitalized patients: 110
  • COVID-19 ICU patients: 25

California COVID-19 Dashboard | Placer County COVID-19 Dashboard


Eastern Placer County Updates

PLACER COUNTY’S CONTINUED INVESTMENT IN NORTH LAKE TAHOE | Since March, the board has approved approximately $1.4 million of transient occupancy tax revenues for more transportation and tourism sustainability projects after action was taken to form the North Lake Tahoe Tourism Business Improvement District. That action, approved by the local business community, freed up millions in transient occupancy tax for key priority programs in North Lake Tahoe, as defined by the region’s Tourism Master Plan. Since the creation of the new Tourism Business Improvement District, Placer County has used the freed up TOT funds to launch TART Connect on-demand transit service, contract with Clean Tahoe for a regional trash cleanup initiative, install a temporary traffic light to pilot one solution to help with road congestion at Grove Street and state Route 28 and more. LEARN MORE

PLACER COUNTY EXPANDS ON-DEMAND TRANSIT SERVICE TART CONNECT THROUGH THE WINTER SEASON | The Placer County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved $530,000 in transient occupancy tax funds to expand the TART Connect on-demand transit pilot program for the winter season. The funding will allow continued TART Connect service from December through April 2022, and will expand service into the Cedar Flat and Carnelian Bay area neighborhoods, now covering all Placer communities along Lake Tahoe. LEARN MORE

PLACER COUNTY SUPERVISORS APPROVE TEMPORARY MORATORIUM ON NEW SHORT-TERM RENTAL PERMITS IN NORTH LAKE TAHOE | The Placer County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a temporary moratorium on new short-term rental permits in North Lake Tahoe, the latest in a series of recent actions to address an unprecedented and growing housing crisis in the region. The urgency ordinance, approved by a 4-0 vote, took effect upon board adoption and with two exceptions. It stops the issuance of all new short-term rental permits within the transient occupancy tax boundaries in eastern Placer County for an initial 45-day period. Exceptions to the moratorium are: Renewal applications for existing permits with no outstanding fees or violations and new applications submitted at least 24 hours prior to Tuesday’s approval. LEARN MORE


SIGNING CEREMONY COMMEMORATES HISTORIC CONSERVATION PROGRAM

The long-awaited Placer County Conservation Program was commemorated today at a signing ceremony in Lincoln, California, marking the approval of the historic plan. LEARN MORE


KEEP HISTORY ALIVE: VOLUNTEER AT PLACER COUNTY MUSEUMS

The Placer Museums Division is recruiting volunteers to join the ranks of the County’s amazing museum volunteers, docents and team members. LEARN MORE  



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | July 23

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | July 23

We are well into another very busy summer in North Lake Tahoe and as always, there is much to report on activities and projects in our region. But first and most importantly, as wildfires ravage many parts of our State and the West, we can never remind ourselves and others enough — please follow all recommendations — be safe, be prepared, be cautious. Learn more on how to prepare for wildfire.

Another important update, the Board of Supervisors will be meeting in North Lake Tahoe on Tuesday, July 27 with a number of items that are specific to or impact Eastern Placer County, including:

  • Presentation from Liberty Utilities on their Community Wildfire Mitigation Program to include the Public Safety Power Shutoff
  • Annual Mountain Housing Council Update and Additional Potential Housing Initiatives for Eastern Placer County
  • Placer County Membership in the Truckee Tahoe Workforce Housing Agency
  • Urgency Ordinance to Establish a Moratorium on the Issuance of New Short-Term Rental Permits
  • Dollar Creek Crossing Housing Project Update
  • Allocation of Transient Occupancy Tax Fund Balance to Fund Winter Microtransit Pilot Program in Eastern Placer County
  • Update on North Lake Tahoe Tourism Mitigation Projects
  • Purchase and Sale Agreement of the Swiss Mart Property in Kings Beach
  • Contract with Nevada County regarding the Collaborative and Regional Health and Human Services in the North Lake Tahoe

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING
TUESDAY, JULY 27 AT 9AM

Meeting will be held at:
North Tahoe Event Center
8318 North Lake Blvd. | Kings Beach, CA 96143

[VIEW AGENDA]

The board meeting will be open to in-person attendance. The entire meeting will also be available on livestream.

Public Comment will be opened for each agenda item, and citizens may comment virtually through a Zoom meeting webinar utilizing the “raise hand” function or if you have joined the Zoom meeting via phone at 877-853-5247 using the Webinar ID 940 6001 9811 please dial *9 to “raise hand” and queue for Public Comment. Please raise your hand at the time the Chair announces the item. There will be no phone reservation line.


DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE FOR TAHOE WORKERS

Workers in the North Lake Tahoe region struggling to afford a home can now apply for a new program to help make their housing dreams come true. The Workforce Housing Preservation Program is designed to secure our existing housing inventory for the local workforce. The program pays homebuyers and new housing developers in exchange for deed restricting their home so that it can only be occupied by local workers. The funding can help homebuyers with down payments or complete renovations. Placer County’s new Workforce Housing Preservation Program is now accepting applications, offering cash assistance for qualified buyers. LEARN MORE

 


REPORT LITTER & TRASH WITH CLEAN TAHOE

Clean Tahoe is a nonprofit organization based in South Lake Tahoe with a proven track record to assist communities with litter and garbage abatement. Placer County and other neighboring jurisdictions in the region are collectively contributing funding to Clean Tahoe to have them address and clean up litter hotspots. This program will complement the Tahoe Truckee Sierra Disposal Service, because while they take care of all of our trash, they’re not set up to do the boots on the ground litter patrol. The whole idea here is not to worry about jurisdictional boundaries – when someone from the public sees a problem trash can, it doesn’t matter whose can it is, they can call it up. Clean Tahoe Program is happy to announce they opened an office in Kings Beach and are now servicing Truckee, Kings Beach, Tahoe City, Incline Village, and Crystal Bay. The public can report litter and trash with Clean Tahoe two ways: Call 530.544.4210 or via their online form. LEARN MORE


TART CONNECT | FREE CURB-TO-CURB TRANSIT SERVICE
tart connect
Now through September 6, Placer County will be offering this FREE service across the North Shore. This free service will offer 8 vehicles that will run daily from 8am to midnight, offering vans that hold up to 9 people as well as bike racks and an ada compliant vehicle available upon request. Request your FREE ride today using the TART Connect App, available for download now! LEARN MORE

 


FIGHTING FOR IMPROVED BROADBAND SERVICE
The Placer County Board of Supervisors this month sent a letter urging action on improving service and infrastructure issues for Altice USA/ Suddenlink broadband customers. While we hope the broadband issues are addressed directly by the service provider, we are also calling on the California Public Utilities Commission and State Legislature to seek solutions, should appropriate action not be taken. LEARN MORE

 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | July 1

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | July 1

CELEBRATE OUR COUNTRY’S INDEPENDENCE DAY – STAY SAFE AND GRATEFUL!

On this holiday weekend let’s remember the leadership, courage, and sacrifices that so many made throughout our nation’s 245-year history – to first establish and then defend our democracy. The Fourth of July commemorates the birth of the United States of America as an independent nation when 56 members of the Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, which gifted our nation independence, self-determination, and the right to dream big. This historic document is still a wonderful read and a way to remember our founding father’s words as they established a new country, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Let’s make this Fourth of July memorable by counting our blessings, truly appreciating our freedom, and celebrating our democracy!

We ask that as you gather with friends and family, please remember that we are in extreme fire danger – be SAFE and remain vigilant for potential ignition points. Let’s keep each other and our communities safe during such a dangerous fire season.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


A MESSAGE FROM PLACER COUNTY FIRE CHIEF BRIAN ESTES

A FRIENDLY REMINDER THAT ALL FIREWORKS ARE ILLEGAL IN EASTERN PLACER COUNTY AND ALL OF UNINCORPORATED PLACER COUNTY. ONE LESS SPARK IS ONE LESS WILDFIRE. Help us all stay safe through the fire season. We live in a beautiful, but fire danger critical area – it is ALL our responsibility to ensure we are fire-prepared. [WATCH VIDEO]

Stay safe and have a Happy 4th of July.


Wildfire Update & Resources

2020 was the worst recorded fire season in California history and 2021 is already surpassing it. There’s a huge fire danger increase this year due to the lack of snow and rain, along with high temperatures. On May 1 the snowpack was at 59% of normal and there were no late spring rains. Fire spread predictions are approximately 6 weeks ahead of normal and the fires we’ve had are extremely hot and fast moving. Please SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERT — it is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

PLAN, PREPARE, STAY AWARE + EVACUATION
Be prepared, know your evacuation routes, and listen to law enforcement! Please remember evacuations are a very coordinated effort between all law enforcement, fire districts, Caltrans, and our county roads — it’s a significant undertaking and planning between the agencies is extensive. In the event of an evacuation, please remain calm, follow the instructions of the emergency personnel, and have an action plan ready before the fire strikes. Have your kit ready to go for every family member, know at least two ways out of your neighborhood, and remember to check all your apps, alerts and social media pages — officials will constantly be pushing out messages immediately and as fast as they can. Don’t wait for the evacuation order — if you feel threatened, leave — and leave as soon as the evacuation is recommended by any officials. Depending on where the fire is located, law enforcement will determine which evacuation route is best, and officials will be placed in strategic areas to direct people where to go. Please don’t stop to try and ask questions — this will delay everyone’s evacuation — trust they are directing you a safe way to get as many people out as quickly as possible. LEARN MORE

 

 

 

RED FLAG WARNING PROGRAM | The Red Flag Warning Program is a local effort to make residents aware of wildfire risk in our community and is issued by the National Weather Service when conditions combine to produce the possibility of extreme fire behavior. If you see red flags posted at fire stations/government buildings, that is the time to visit readyforwildfire.org. LEARN MORE

HI-LO SIRENS CAN HELP SAVE LIVES | The Placer County Sheriff’s Office released an important PSA regarding hi-low sirens and how they can help keep us safe. The hi-lo siren was installed in patrol units in 2019 to be used during emergency evacuations. The sound is different from the traditional police siren — it will ONLY be used in areas facing danger from a wildfire, chemical spill, flood, etc. LEARN MORE

IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:


Housing Update

As we all know, Eastern Placer County is facing an unprecedented housing crisis and our region is losing long-term rental space at a very alarming rate. Our workforce is being driven out of our community and almost every business in the region has had to adjust hours and services due to lack of staff. We realize that the already critical housing shortage has been exacerbated by the unprecedented surge in values of homes. I am working with our County officials and the Mountain Housing Council partners to do everything we can to ease the situation and keep new workforce housing projects moving forward. With more challenging times ahead we encourage anyone who is willing and able to please consider offering your home or even just a room – whether it’s just for a season, or long-term. It is going to take an entire community effort to help each other through this crisis and rebuild a balanced community.


CURRENT HOUSING PROGRAMS & PROJECTS

The Placer County Housing Goals include increasing the availability and mix housing types, improving the County’s overall employment growth and reducing vehicle miles traveled. Currently, Eastern Placer County has two projects in construction including Meadow View Place in Martis Valley which broke ground in July 2020 with 56 units of workforce housing and Hopkins Village which is currently creating a list of qualified buyers with 40 units of workforce housing. Upcoming development in Eastern Placer County includes Dollar Creek Crossing where the County will be conducting a site study to assist in planning/design development of the site this spring followed by the environmental review starting this summer. Potential future projects include the redevelopment of the Tahoe Inn in Kings Beach and the former Eastern Gateway property in Kings Beach. LEARN MORE

Please join our July 27 Tahoe Board of Supervisors Meeting for more thorough update on housing.


Additional News & Resources

TART CONNECT | FREE CURB-TO-CURB TRANSIT SERVICE

On June 25, I joined the community for a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the debut of Tart Connect, a free curb-to-curb transit service in North Lake Tahoe. Now through September 6, Placer County will be offering this service across the North Shore with service zones that include West Shore, Tahoe City, Dollar Point, Tahoe Vista, Kings Beach, Tahoe Vista, Brockway, Crystal Bay, and Incline Village. This free service will offer 8 vehicles that will run daily from 8am to midnight, offering vans that hold up to 9 people as well as bike racks and an ada compliant vehicle available upon request. Request your FREE ride today using the TART Connect App, available for download now! This microtransit pilot program is operated by downtowner and managed by Placer County Department of Public Works, transit division. LEARN MORE


 

CLEAN TAHOE PROGRAM

Clean Tahoe is a nonprofit organization based in South Lake Tahoe with a proven track record to assist communities with litter and garbage abatement. Placer County and other neighboring jurisdictions in the region are collectively contributing funding to Clean Tahoe to have them address and clean up litter hotspots. This program will complement the Tahoe Truckee Sierra Disposal Service, because while they take care of all of our trash, they’re not set up to do the boots on the ground litter patrol. The whole idea here is not to worry about jurisdictional boundaries – when someone from the public sees a problem trash can, it doesn’t matter whose can it is, they can call it up. Clean Tahoe program is scheduled to launch a 1-year pilot trash abatement program for the North Lake Tahoe area on Friday, July 2. LEARN MORE

 


TEMPORARY SIGNAL AT GROVE STREET

Placer County staff have been working with Caltrans for over a year to get permitting to deploy a temporary signal to improve car and pedestrian safety and control their movements at this high volume intersection. It was finally installed on Wednesday night and became effective July 1, 2021. Caltrans and our staff will monitor traffic conditions to determine how effective it is and whether we want to consider a permanent pedestrian signal. LEARN MORE

 


COMPLIANCE MANAGEMENT EFFORTS FOR SHORT TERM RENTALS (STRS)

Placer County staff have been working with Caltrans for over a year to get permitting to deploy a temporary signal to improve car and pedestrian safety and control their movements at this high volume intersection. It was finally installed on Wednesday night and became effective July 1, 2021. Caltrans and our staff will monitor traffic conditions to determine how effective it is and whether we want to consider a permanent pedestrian signal. LEARN MORE

 


TAHOE CITY’S PENNY BEAR

Last week our beloved Penny Bear received a much-needed “bath”! The artists who created Penny Bear gave her a good cleaning and trained our Placer County team on how to take care of the piece going forward. LEARN MORE

 

 

FINAL COUNTY BUDGET APPROVED

The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a balanced budget of $1,024,477,507 for the next fiscal year – 0.4% increase from last year’s final budget of $1,020,071,376. LEARN MORE

 

 


PLACER RANKS #35 AS ONE OF THE HEALTHIEST COMMUNITIES IN NATION

Where you live can play a crucial role in determining how healthy you are. The 2021 Healthiest Communities rankings highlight measure nearly 3,000 U.S. counties and county equivalents across 84 factors that fuel and form the health of a community and its residents. Check out the report!

 

 


Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Newsletter | July 1

Placer County District 5 Newsletter | July 1

CELEBRATE OUR COUNTRY’S INDEPENDENCE DAY –
STAY SAFE AND GRATEFUL!

On this holiday weekend let’s remember the leadership, courage, and sacrifices that so many made throughout our nation’s 245-year history – to first establish and then defend our democracy. The Fourth of July commemorates the birth of the United States of America as an independent nation when 56 members of the Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, which gifted our nation independence, self-determination, and the right to dream big. This historic document is still a wonderful read and a way to remember our founding father’s words as they established a new country, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Let’s make this Fourth of July memorable by counting our blessings, truly appreciating our freedom, and celebrating our democracy!

We ask that as you gather with friends and family, please remember that we are in extreme fire danger – be SAFE and remain vigilant for potential ignition points. Let’s keep each other and our communities safe during such a dangerous fire season.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor

 


A MESSAGE FROM PLACER COUNTY FIRE CHIEF BRIAN ESTES

A FRIENDLY REMINDER THAT FIREWORKS ARE ILLEGAL IN DISTRICT 5 AND ALL OF UNINCORPORATED PLACER COUNTY. ONE LESS SPARK IS ONE LESS WILDFIRE. Help us all stay safe through the fire season. We live in a beautiful, but fire danger critical area – it is ALL our responsibility to ensure we are fire-prepared. [WATCH VIDEO]

Stay safe and have a Happy 4th of July.

“BE WISE TO RIVER RISE” & SWIFT WATER RESCUES | As always, we recommend you wear a lifejacket to protect yourself and loved ones, and “be wise to river rise” whenever you are near the river. In 2020, the Placer County Fire Department Technical Rescue Team responded to over 270 river and Technical Rescues. Please remember river water can be deceiving; while everything may appear calm on the surface, swift currents lie underneath, and the water temperature is cold enough to allow hypothermia to set in in as little as 15 minutes!


Wildfire Update & Resources

2020 was the worst recorded fire season in California history and 2021 is already surpassing it. There’s a huge fire danger increase this year due to the lack of snow and rain, along with high temperatures. On May 1 the snowpack was at 59% of normal and there were no late spring rains. Fire spread predictions are approximately 6 weeks ahead of normal and the fires we’ve had are extremely hot and fast moving. Please SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERT – it is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

PLAN, PREPARE, STAY AWARE + EVACUATION

Be prepared, know your evacuation routes, and listen to law enforcement! Please remember evacuations are a very coordinated effort between all law enforcement, fire districts, Caltrans, and our county roads – it’s a significant undertaking and planning between the agencies is extensive. In the event of an evacuation, please remain calm, follow the instructions of the emergency personnel, and have an action plan ready before the fire strikes. Have your kit ready to go for every family member, know at least two ways out of your neighborhood, and remember to check all your apps, alerts and social media pages – officials will constantly be pushing out messages immediately and as fast as they can. Don’t wait for the evacuation order – if you feel threatened, leave – and leave as soon as the evacuation is recommended by any officials. Depending on where the fire is located, law enforcement will determine which evacuation route is best, and officials will be placed in strategic areas to direct people where to go. Please don’t stop to try and ask questions – this will delay everyone’s evacuation – trust they are directing you a safe way to get as many people out as quickly as possible. LEARN MORE

RED FLAG WARNING PROGRAM | The Red Flag Warning Program is a local effort to make residents aware of wildfire risk in our community and is issued by the National Weather Service when conditions combine to produce the possibility of extreme fire behavior. If you see red flags posted at fire stations/government buildings, that is the time to visit readyforwildfire.org. LEARN MORE

HI-LO SIRENS CAN HELP SAVE LIVES | The Placer County Sheriff’s Office released an important PSA regarding hi-low sirens and how they can help keep us safe. The hi-lo siren was installed in patrol units in 2019 to be used during emergency evacuations. The sound is different from the traditional police siren — it will ONLY be used in areas facing danger from a wildfire, chemical spill, flood, etc. LEARN MORE

IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:

Placer Sierra Fire Safe Council
Ready for Wildfire webpage
Homeowner’s checklist
Defensible space information
Prepare for quick evacuation
Build an emergency kit
Sign up for Placer Alert


MEADOW VISTA RURAL MAIN STREETS PROGRAM

On June 26, I joined Meadow Vista community members, County staff, Local Government Commission, and volunteers for a temporary demonstration event to test out pedestrian and streetscape improvements along Placer Hills Road. The temporary improvements included delineated pedestrian pathways, curb enhancements, and high-visibility crosswalks. LEARN MORE

 


FINAL COUNTY BUDGET APPROVED

The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve a balanced budget of $1,024,477,507 for the next fiscal year – 0.4% increase from last year’s final budget of $1,020,071,376. LEARN MORE

 


HOUSING DEVELOPMENT ADVISORY TASKFORCE MEMBERS APPOINTED

Affordable housing in Placer County has nine new champions, with the county Board of Supervisors voting unanimously to appoint the members of its new Housing Development Advisory Taskforce. LEARN MORE

 


AUBURN/LINCOLN AIRPORTS LAND USE COMPATIBILITY PLAN WORKSHOPS

The PCTPA/ALUC is hosting two virtual community workshops this summer to discuss the updated Airport Land Use Compatibility Plans for the Auburn and Lincoln airports. The two workshops will take place on July 14 (Auburn) and July 15 (Lincoln). LEARN MORE

 


PLACER RANKS #35 AS ONE OF THE HEALTHIEST COMMUNITIES IN NATION

The 2021 Healthiest Communities rankings measure nearly 3,000 U.S. counties and county equivalents across 84 factors that fuel and form the health of a community and its residents. Check out the report!

 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | June 22

Placer County District 5 Bulletin | June 22

EASTERN PLACER COUNTY TOWN HALL RECAP

On Thursday, June 10, I joined County staff and other Public Agencies for a Virtual Eastern Placer County Town Hall. I want to thank all of the panelists that participated and I hope you can see how hard everybody’s working. We are trying to focus on getting some pretty big projects done and direct our energy where we can best make a difference for North Lake Tahoe and Eastern Placer County. We had a great meeting with a lot of valuable information pertaining to our region – especially as we head into another busy summer.

I want to follow-up with a brief recap of the meeting. In addition, I included everyone’s contact information in the event you’d like to learn more. You will also find a link to a recording of the meeting in case you were unable to attend or simply want to revisit one of the topics.

[WATCH THE EPC TOWN HALL]

[VIEW THE AGENDA]


COVID & VACCINE UPDATE

Placer County is seeing the lowest covid & hospitalization rates since September! County wide, the case rate is about 3 cases per 100K and testing positivity rate of less than 2%, and even lower in Eastern Placer. We can attribute this to the high effectiveness of the vaccine – Placer County has over 380,000 does in arms. The pace of vaccination has slowed down – 600 per day vs 4000 per day back in April. Some communities have high rates, such as Tahoe City, and other communities have lower rates, such as Kings Beach having one of the lower rates in the County. Kings Beach has demographic factors working against it, such as a younger population as well as lower rates of vaccine uptake among the Latino population. Placer County offered a pop up clinic in the beginning of the month that didn’t have as much traffic as we had hoped – about 60 vaccinations between the two nights.

Presenter: Dr. Rob Oldham, Placer County Director of Health and Human Services, Interim Public Health Officer & Chief Psychiatrist


WILDFIRE UPDATES + RESOURCES

CALFIRE
2020 was the worst recorded fire season in California history and 2021 is not looking good. There’s a huge increase this year due to the lack of snow and rain in our area. On May 1 the snowpack was at 59% of normal and there were no late spring rains. Fire spread predictions are approximately 6 weeks ahead of normal and the fires we’ve had are extremely hot and fast moving. An update of what they have done and are doing include:

• 712 hazard piles burned last season in the Tahoe region
• 58 acres high hazard area treated
• 97 hazard trees were dropped
• Residential burning has been suspended
• Peak staffing levels – 411 State funded personnel in the Nevada Yuba Placer Unit
• 27 staffed engines, 5 type 1 hand crews, 4 bulldozers (1 prepositioned on the east side as conditions warrant), 1 air attack, and 2 air tankers

Presenter: Chief Mike Rufenacht

LOCAL FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICTS
North Tahoe Fire, Truckee Fire, Northstar Fire, + Olympic Valley Fire

Our area is operationally consolidated – which means all of our local Fire Districts including North Tahoe, Truckee, Northstar, Olympic Valley and Incline Village are on the same dispatch and frequency out of Grass Valley – allowing the closest resource to respond to the emergency no matter the jurisdiction as well as share resources. All our fire chiefs took to the same page as CalFire and noted that we are in an exceptionally dry year and that we all need to be prepared for the fire season. Please remember, that in addition to the suspension of residential burning, campfires and charcoal outside of campgrounds are banned. They also emphasized the importance of defensible space around your home. Another important reminder, all fireworks are illegal in unincorporated Placer County.

Please SIGN UP FOR PLACER ALERTIt is the single best way to stay informed in an emergency.

Presenters:
North Tahoe Fire | Chief Steve Leighton
Truckee Fire | Chief Bill Seline
Northstar Fire | Chief Sean Bailey
Olympic Valley Fire | Chief Allen Riley

 

PLAN, PREPARE, STAY AWARE + EVACUATION
Be prepared, know your evacuation routes, and listen to law enforcement! Please remember evacuations are a very coordinated effort between all law enforcement, fire districts, Caltrans, and our county roads – it’s a big ordeal that includes a lot of people at once. In the event of an evacuation, please remain calm, follow the instructions of the emergency personnel and have an action plan ready before the fire strikes. Have your kit ready to go for every family member, know at least two ways out of your neighborhood, and have all your apps, alerts and social media pages followed – they will constantly be pushing out messages immediately and as fast as they can. Don’t wait for the evacuation order – if you feel threatened, leave – and leave as soon as the evacuation is recommended by any fire officials. Depending on where the fire is located, law enforcement will determine which evacuation route is best, and officials will be placed in strategic areas to direct people where to go. Please don’t stop to try and ask questions – trust they are directing you a safe way to get as many people out as possible.

 

 

 

IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:

 


ADDITIONAL PUBLIC AGENCY UPDATES

UNITED STATES FOREST SERVICE
If you’re a homeowner that abuts the forest and you’d like to implement that hundred feet of defensible space behind your property out into the forest, we have that capability to do so to get you that permission fairly quickly to implement. Recreation updates included Sugar Bowl Snow Play, Tahoe National Forest Truckee Ranger District recently approved 35 miles of native surface trail open to class 1 e-bike, and they are looking to formalize the Cabin Creek parking into a more professional manner with a hard surface for plowing, greater capacity and better winter access.
Presenter: Jonathan Cook-Fisher, District Ranger

CALIFORNIA HIGHWAY PATROL/ CHP
We are expecting a busier summer than last year with more visitors – which means the California Highway Patrol will target everything they normally do including speeding, DUIs, seatbelts, distracted driving, cell phones as well as be all around the lake doing their normal parking enforcement. In addition, CHP will have their bike patrol out all summer long which also helps with community engagement.
Presenter: Lt. Matt Tweed

PLACER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
On June 5 at 10pm, Placer County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a 911 call that came from a residence in Homewood, in North Lake Tahoe. Deputies arrived to the home and located 70-year old Robert Gary Spohr, who was found deceased as a result of a single gunshot wound. Surveillance captured this video of a male who was seen on foot around the property at the time of the incident. Anyone with information on this homicide and any surveillance systems located along West Lake Boulevard is being urged to call the Placer County Sheriff’s Office tip line at: (530) 889-7853.
Presenter: Lt. Paul Long

TAHOE CITY PUBLIC UTILITY DISTRICT
Boat Launches around the lake are closing due to low water levels creating an increasing demand at the Lake Forest Boat Ramp. In response, TCPUD closed the campground to provide overflow boat trailer parking which creates 24 additional spots. They also announced their newest property, the Tahoe City Community Center, located at the old Maritime Museum, 401 West Lake Blvd. The property includes 11 acres with a 2-story log building. They are preparing the grounds, gardens, casibo, ponds, and electrical for outdoor concerts – available for rent for public/private events plus staff on the 2nd story of log building.
Presenter: Kay Bernston, Parks Facilities Superintendent

NORTH TAHOE PUBLIC UTILITY DISTRICT
Rehabilitation is underway for the sewer pump stations at Tahoe Vista and Moon Dunes. The new sewer pump and upgraded electrical equipment will make the systems much more reliable. You can still access both beaches while under construction. Also, their crews recently removed synthetic turf on field 4 at the North Tahoe Regional Park with the new turf expected to done this fall. They are also working on a new paved pathway into the tennis courts. And the low lake level forced NTUD to shut down the Tahoe Vista boat ramp.
Presenter: Justin Broglio, Public Information Officer


NEW SUMMER SERVICES

TART CONNECT
This microtransit pilot program will be operated by downtowner, managed by Placer County Department of Public Works, Transit division. Starting on June 24 through September 6, Placer County will be offering free curb-to-curb transit service across the North Shore with service zones that include West Shore, Tahoe City, Dollar Point, Tahoe Vista, Kings Beach, Tahoe Vista, Brockway, Crystal Bay, and Incline Village. This free service will offer 8 vehicles that will run daily from 8am to midnight, offering vans that hold up to 9 people as well as bike racks and ada compliant vehicle available upon request. Request your ride using the TART Connect App, available for download now! We invite you to join us for a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony this Friday, June 25 at 10am at the North Tahoe Event Center followed by a post ribbon cutting reception from 11:30am-1pm.
Presenter: Lindsay Romack, Management Analyst, Placer CEO’s Office

 

 

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Let’s work together to educate our visitors and our locals about taking care of this special place that we all get to live in and be stewards of.

TAKE CARE TAHOE
Take Care Tahoe is the unified stewardship campaign for the entire Tahoe region. Their messages are designed to be witty and stand out but also be straight to the point, with the mission of connecting people to Tahoe and inspiring a culture of responsibility and respect. Outdoor recreation exploded quite a bit and to help avoid some of those issues, Take Care Tahoe has implemented a useful website where visitors can really connect and learn more about the Tahoe region including public beach information, biking information, maps, public transportation information, trail information, volunteer resources, and guided hikes. To compliment the site, they offer a lot of in situation signage available for purchase. In addition they implemented on the ground education with their Take Care Ambassadors program – offering five different programs and totaling 75 ambassadors.
Presenter: Crew Stover, Program & Outreach Coordinator

SUSTAINABILITY PLEDGE
The magic of Lake Tahoe lies in the culture of our communities and the natural beauty that surrounds us. Together we’re asking community members and travelers alike to follow six pledge commitments that amplify environmental stewardship efforts. The traveler responsibility pledge reminds us to travel with awareness and observe the impact of individual actions. Take the pledge + watch the video
Presenter: Jeff Hentz, CEO NLTRA

CLEAN TAHOE PROGRAM
Clean Tahoe is a nonprofit organization based in South Lake Tahoe with a proven track record to assist communities with litter and garbage abatement. Placer County and other neighboring jurisdictions in the region are collectively contributing funding to Clean Tahoe to have them address and clean up litter hotspots. This program will complement the Tahoe Truckee Sierra Disposal Service, because while they take care of all of our trash, they’re not set up to do the boots on the ground litter patrol. The whole idea here is not to worry about jurisdictional boundaries – when someone from the public sees a problem trash can, it doesn’t matter whose can it is, they can call it up. Launch is planned for the end of the month.
Presenter: Peter Kraatz, Assistant Director of Public Works

 


COMPLIANCE MANAGEMENT EFFORTS FOR STRS

As we head into summer, our noise complaints are going to go up as people are outdoors and windows are open. We do have a very full enforcement schedule and our staff is available with very few gaps throughout the week. We are hoping that the ordinance continues to work as it has with our local contacts resolving issues and really limiting the impact on our neighborhoods. Please call our 24/7 hotline at 530-448-8003 to report a violation and speak directly to enforcement staff.

JAN-MAY 2021 complaints | 83

  • Noise | 43
  • Trash | 8
  • Parking | 21
  • Occupancy | 1
  • Permit requirements | 10

Presenter: Jayme Paine, Supervising Code Compliance Officer


PROJECT UPDATES

DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS IN EASTERN PLACER

Tahoe City Downtown Access Improvement Project | This project is designed to improve vehicular circulation and access to parking in the downtown core of Tahoe City to address existing commercial development in parking. The environmental document for this project was recently approved by our Board of Supervisors and we are now commencing with detail, design and looking into securing funding. Target construction date for this project is 2023.

Traffic Crossing Guards Program | We’ve again hired a contractor to provide pedestrian flaggers at high-volume crosswalks in both Tahoe City and Kings Beach. The locations include the Commons Beach Road crosswalk at Hwy 28 in Tahoe City, and the four crosswalks at the two roundabouts in Kings Beach. The contractor will typically perform the work on Thursdays at Commons Beach, and Saturdays and Sundays in Kings Beach – usually from about 12-4 pm to capture the highest volumes of pedestrians and help with improving vehicular flow through the two town centers.

Pilot Signalization of Grove St & Hwy 28 | We’ve been working with Caltrans for over a year to get permitting to deploy a temporary signal to improve car and pedestrian safety and control their movements at this high volume intersection. We will monitor traffic conditions to determine how effective it is and whether we want to consider a permanent signal. We’re excited to launch this in July and we’ll run it for as long as we can, until the snow flies.

Our Roads | We have 150 miles of roads between North Lake Tahoe, West Shore and up to the Serene Lakes area. We are planning to perform surface treatments in the Regency Way neighborhood. We hope to address the Timberland neighborhood next year.

Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program | This long standing program addresses requests by various neighbors on our County roads asking about traffic calming and what can be done about slowing down cars. The most recent one is on Fairway Dr. In Tahoe City and the Board of Supervisors recently approved building three speed cushions to be spread out along the road.

Truckee River Trail and Access Plan | We still need to do about 25 miles of trail which is primarily in Martis Valley and then and then along the Truckee River. We plan to launch into the formal environmental analysis effort on July 9, opening the formal notice of for comments by the public and then closing on August 8 with a public meeting on July 21 during that period.

Martis Valley Trail | Construction has begun to connect the East end of Martis Valley up to Northstar Drive. Hopefully next year another section of trail will fill the gap so we’ll have a paved trail all the way from the Town of Truckee into Placer County and up to Northstar Drive.

Presenter: Peter Kraatz, Assistant Director of Public Works


COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT RESOURCE AGENCY/PLANNING

Tahoe City Lodge | We are pleased to announce that this project is moving forward and have been working with a development team on finalizing their improvement plans. We hope to have a building permit issued towards the end of summer so that they can get their footing set before winter comes.

Sugar Bowl Tube Park | This project is located on the north side of Sugar Bowl Resort, west of Lake Mary and will include 600 feet with 2 sets of five parallel groomed runs and a centrally located magic carpet on 7.75 acres owned by Sugar Bowl Resort and USFS. It also includes snow making equipment, 206 parking stalls, temporary service structure for phase one with a permanent facility in phase two. Project is scheduled for Zoning Administrator public hearing on July 15.

Brockway North Hotel | Predevelopment application for a potential mixed use redevelopment project at 8602 North Lake Blvd and includes a 4-story building with 21-unit boutique hotel, 9 condo units, restaurant, retail, meeting/seminar room, outdoor public performance site/playground/public art. Expect public outreach in late summer.

Tahoe Inn Workforce Housing | Predevelopment application for a potential workforce housing redevelopment project at 9937 North Lake Blvd at Stateline and includes 51 multi-family and 60 multi-person units in 2-3 story buildings and about 2,000 square feet of commercial use. No formal application submitted to date.

Presenter: Crystal Jacobsen, Deputy CDRA Director


COUNTY UPDATES FROM SUPERVISOR CINDY GUSTAFSON

LIBRARIES | We will start a feasibility and analysis of both our Kings Beach and Tahoe City libraries. Not only do we need a larger library in Kings Beach, but we’re looking at a potential relocation into the Kings Beach Center if that moves forward. We are also looking at a potential relocation of the Tahoe City library to a more visible spot. In addition, we are checking into a regional system by creating a partnership with Truckee. You’ll hear more about that as well as outreach regarding our local libraries so we can analyze how we can best adjust our services and potentially expand.

SUDDENLINK | We are looking into passing a County ordinance so we can start to fine Suddenlink for their service meeting certain standards including lack of investment and customer responses. Please forward your concerns along to our office – we are keeping a log and forwarding them off to Suddenlink.

TRANSPORTATION FUNDING | We need to find a regional revenue stream to sustain and expand our micro mass programs throughout our entire region year-round as well as make that a part of the way we live up here. Our systems are not seamless nor fully connected and we will continue to look into free, frequent service in the Basin.

BIOMASS | Placer County, surrounding counties and special districts are looking into ways we can stop paying money to haul our wood off the hill by trying find a local biomass plant. In addition, we’re collaborating on ways we can use that energy and wood product right here in our region.

HOUSING | It is beyond a crisis! It is a horrible situation for our employers and employees that are being kicked out of their homes. Our region is losing long-term rental space at a very rapid rate and we are working every opportunity we can to revise ordinances to ease the situation so we can get some housing projects going. We are way behind and none of us anticipated Covid and the pressure it created for our community. We all know this is a very challenging time. I encourage you to join our July 27 Tahoe Board of Supervisors Meeting for a more thorough report on housing updates.

Thank you to the incredible dedication of so many of our county staff and local agencies, I’m so impressed with everybody’s efforts.

In service,
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor


Redistricting Placer | Public Meeting on June 24

The once-a-decade process of revising Placer County’s supervisorial district boundaries gets underway June 24 with the first in a series of public meetings with an Advisory Redistricting Commission. The Placer County Advisory Redistricting Commission, which is set to consider amendments to the boundaries of the county’s five supervisorial districts later this year, will host a public meeting at 10:10 a.m. on June 24 at the Community Development Resource Agency in North Auburn. LEARN MORE


Free Plans for ADUs

Placer County is now providing free building plans to homeowners interested in constructing an accessory home on their property, saving thousands in building costs, while helping to increase the county’s stock of affordable housing As of March 8, Placer County has received 24 applications, 16 permits issued and 89 accessory home inquiries in 2021. LEARN MORE
 



Contact information:

 175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603 

Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Kelly McCaughna: kmccaughna@placer.ca.gov

District Aide Sophie Fox: sfox@placer.ca.gov

Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: lthayer@placer.ca.gov