PUBLIC SERVICES IN EASTERN PLACER COUNTY
As a 40-year resident of Tahoe City, I have been fortunate to spend many years volunteering with incredible community members to improve our communities in Eastern Placer County. When the opportunity to serve on the Board of Supervisors presented itself, I changed my career plans and sought this office to ensure fair representation for Eastern Placer County. While we have a number of issues in common with our fellow county residents, we also have unique needs and concerns.
Since taking office I have learned a tremendous amount about the other areas of the County and particularly the communities in my District. I find it rewarding to work on issues throughout the County in efforts to improve services and solve the challenges before us. One of those areas is library services.
Recently the County completed a library study that reviewed our current library service models, library facilities, and the Grand Jury recommendations from 2015-16 and 2020-21. The study revealed that the growth in property taxes dedicated to library services is not keeping up with the costs to provide the current services. The revenues from Eastern Placer County (including appropriate overhead) exceed expenditures for direct services, and both our Tahoe City and Kings Beach libraries are too small to provide the level of service desired by our library users. In response, our office has been meeting with representatives from the Town of Truckee, Nevada County and Friends of the Truckee Library to discuss regional library service delivery models as well as other opportunities for collaboration and coordination.
A number of constituents have written my office, fearful that the County is considering closing the Tahoe City Library. I want to assure you that nothing could be further from the truth! I am dedicated to finding ways to improve service reliability, share resources and ensure that taxes you pay for library services are dedicated to serving you. Later this fall we will be convening more discussions on this important topic.
Cindy Gustafson, District 5 Supervisor
On June 27 we gathered to honor a legacy of volunteer public service that started in 1971! Past and present leaders from the Placer County Board of Supervisors and Planning Commission, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, California Tahoe Conservancy, North Tahoe Public Utility District, Tahoe City Public Utility District, and Tahoe Nordic Search and Rescue, gathered with Larry and Patsy Sevison and their family, to recognize Larry’s 50+ years of service to Placer County and the Lake Tahoe region. Many of those people shared stories of Larry’s service through the decades. Each story had a common theme – that Larry’s humble, kind, and thoughtful leadership set an example for all of us to learn from and to strive for throughout our lives. WATCH DEDICATION VIDEO
Local workers at all income levels looking to buy a home in North Lake Tahoe are now eligible for down payment assistance through Placer County’s Workforce Housing Preservation Program. Launched in 2021, the program pays participants to deed restrict their properties so that only local workers can purchase or rent them, providing home buyers a funding source that could be used for a down payment or renovations. LEARN MORE
On-demand transit service in eastern Placer County is receiving high marks for its performance and is viewed as a major reason why the Tahoe Truckee Area Regional Transportation service has seen a 20% increase in ridership over pre-COVID numbers. LEARN MORE
Given the high price of gas and the public’s interest in protecting our environment, I am pleased to hear that our residents are taking advantage of this free transportation service, I am not surprised by the excellent reviews. I regularly hear from residents who share that they use the service and think it’s great!
On July 7, I joined a tour with Truckee Fire, CalFire, Placer Fire, and Placer County’s Regional Forest Health Coordinator to see firsthand the developing issue of large tree deaths on Donner Summit, especially with the red fir around Serene Lakes. The trees are drought-stressed and then vulnerable to the bark beetle. Many have already died and more are showing signs of infestation. Unfortunately we expect that this is only the beginning resulting in significant tree mortality in the area. We discussed the need for immediate steps to protect our forests and our communities. Staff is working on developing action plans and funding requests to address this critical problem. LEARN MORE ABOUT FOREST HEALTH
Traffic Control to be Restricted During Peak Hours
Caltrans is alerting motorists of a schedule change starting next week for traffic-interfering work on State Highway 28 for a utility project. Southwest Gas and its contractor, Q&D Construction, are working on a gas line replacement project between Tahoe City and Kings Beach. Beginning Monday, July 18, both lanes of Highway 28 from Sahara Drive to Onyx Street will be open from 3-7pm to avoid delays during peak traffic. One-way traffic control will be in effect from 7pm Sunday to 3 p.m. Monday, Monday through Thursday from 7am-3pm and from 7pm Thursday to 7am Friday. No work is scheduled on the weekend. Motorists should expect delays of up to 20 minutes during one-way traffic control. Caltrans issues construction updates on Twitter @CaltransDist3, on Facebook at CaltransDistrict3 and on the its online lane closure reports. For real-time traffic, click on Caltrans’ QuickMap quickmap.dot.ca.gov/ or download the QuickMap app from the App Store or Google Play. LEARN MORE
The Board of Supervisors Meetings on June 27 and 28 included several items that are specific to or impact Eastern Placer County….
- Adoption of the Fiscal Year 2022-23 Budget
- Tahoe Justice Center and Tahoe City Courthouse | Memorandum of Understanding with Judicial Council of California
- North Lake Tahoe Resort Association | Annual Report & Destination Stewardship
- Tahoe Truckee Area Regional Transit Connect Pilot Program
- Proposed Revisions to Workforce Housing Preservation Program
- Short-Term Rental Program Implementation Update
- The Clean Tahoe Program
- Grove Street Temporary Signal Update
We all know that wherever we reside in Placer County, we have chosen a very special place to live. Our residents benefit from the incredible beauty of our open space, our agricultural lands, our foothill communities, and our recreational opportunities in the High Sierra. We recently learned that Placer County was one of only three California counties that ranked in the top 50 of 3,000 counties nationwide, in the U.S. News’ 2022 Healthiest Communities rankings.
The fifth annual Healthiest Communities project from U.S. News assessed dozens of metrics that fall into 10 health and health-related categories, such as public safety, economy, housing and the environment. Individual metrics include community crime rates, obesity prevalence, high school graduation rate and walkability, and communities are scored on a 100-point scale tied to how they perform relative to one another. Placer County ranked third, just behind Santa Clara and San Mateo County, and just ahead of Marin County, Orange County, and Napa County.
In addition, Placer County placed first nationally in our population-size category in the 20th annual Digital Counties Survey! This is the fourth consecutive year Placer has finished in the top four for innovative use of emerging technologies to serve our residents.
While we will always have more to improve, this survey is a good reminder of how fortunate we truly are as residents of Placer County.
The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to approve a balanced budget totaling $1,221,251,032 for fiscal year 2022-23, representing a 19.2% increase over FY 2021-22. The increase is attributed to inflationary costs and the addition of staffing to deliver services in key strategic areas of county operations. These cost increases are primarily offset with additional property and sales tax revenues related to the growing local economy. State and federal grant revenues have also increased to offset the growing cost of health and human services and public safety programs. Also included in the budget is an increase of $99.1 million in capital projects, which are funded by bond financing, capital reserves and state grants. LEARN MORE
I am proud that our county is in a strong financial position and can adequately serve its residents by providing comprehensive county services. Our state partners are pessimistic about the economy in the coming fiscal year and it’s imperative that we be prepared to backfill our services with reserve funds should the state decrease its budget allocations to counties.
- IN PERSON | Placer County Assessor’s Confluence Meeting Room in Auburn
- VIRTUALLY | via Zoom
There will be over 180 positions available on various local city councils, school boards, parks, fire, water and utility districts in Placer County this November. Citizens who are interested in serving their community and are registered voters are qualified to run for local office but may not know how to go about it. The Placer County Elections Office is holding a candidate workshop July 23 to take the mystery out of running for office. Prospective candidates and their supporters are encouraged to attend. Members of the media and the general public are also invited. The workshop will explain many of the details involved in running for public office including campaign financial disclosure filing, campaign techniques and working with the media. Guest speakers will include a successful candidate, a campaign consultant, member of the media, Placer County Clerk-Recorder-Registrar of Voters Ryan Ronco, and knowledgeable elections staff. Candidate filing for the November 2022 general election opened July 18 and closes at 5pm on August 12. LEARN MORE
Wildfire Updates + Resources
Residents are urged to remain vigilant as we head into peak fire season. CAL FIRE/Placer County Fire Chief Brian Estes shares his fire season outlook and the increased resources that are dedicated to our region.
The Board of Supervisors recently approved $700,000 over two years to continue the expanded pilot Residential Chipper Program with the Placer County Resource Conservation District. The Chipper Program is a good use of public funds because it provides a low-cost residential chipper service for Placer residents, incentivizes fuels reduction on residential properties, and promotes defensible space. LEARN MORE
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.
IMPORTANT WILDFIRE RESOURCES:
Placer County placed first nationally in our population-size category in the 20th annual Digital Counties Survey! This is the fourth consecutive year Placer has finished in the top four for innovative use of emerging technologies to serve our residents. LEARN MORE
Placer County has joined Simplicity – a free smartphone app for local news and information. Just download the app, select your community and follow Placer County for push alerts on all the topics that interest you. LEARN MORE
Check out Placer County’s employment website for a list of open positions, including internships. Job seekers can apply for positions and sign up for job alerts to be notified of openings.
APPLY FOR A JOB | SIGN UP FOR JOB ALERTS!
175 Fulweiler Ave., Auburn, CA 95603
Supervisor Cindy Gustafson: cindygustafson@
District Aide Sophie Fox: email@example.com
District Aide Katelynn Hopkins: firstname.lastname@example.org
Assistant District Aide Lindsay Thayer: email@example.com