The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) is improving its customer service and regional permitting system. Environmentally beneficial redevelopment and private sector investments are a crucial element in ensuring a sustainable Lake Tahoe.

Arlo Stockham, of Stockham Consulting, and a dedicated team of TRPA staff are working together with local stakeholders and agency partners to take a comprehensive look at our permitting system. The priorities for the initiative include:

    • Establish more efficient, consistent, and predictable application review processes.
    • Simplify and shorten review processes for minor applications and sequential approvals.
    • Update code standards that are difficult to interpret, do not add value, or are unduly cumbersome.
    • Prioritize public communication and customer services.
    • Expand tools for staff development and training.
    • Maintain adequate and dependable funding to support quality application reviews.
Project Status

Amendments to the Code of Ordinances, Rules of Procedure, and Design Review Guidelines went into effect November 26, 2023. Updates to fees became effective January 22, 2024.

In September and October of 2023, the TRPA Governing Board adopted a suite of amendments to the Code of Ordinances, Rules of Procedure, Design Review Guidelines, and Fee Schedule aimed at the priorities listed above. These changes implement the actions and recommendations of stakeholders identified in the March 2023 Implementation Report.

Adopted Amendments

The suite of amendments adopted in September and October 2023 include:

  • Expanding the list of Exempt activities (not needing TRPA review)
  • Changes to the required Level of Review for projects. (e.g. pier projects can now be reviewed at staff level without a hearing)
  • Clarifying the Land Coverage definition and transfer criteria.
  • Expanding eligibility of Coverage Exemptions.
  • Clarifying Height and Roof Pitch
  • New expedited review of Minor Projects and streamlined process for concurrent reviews.
  • Streamlining projects related to Historic Resources.
Operational Improvements

The amendments above are paired with sweeping procedural and administrative internal improvements, including:

  • Dedicated project review teams.
  • Dedicated customer service phone line and staff to answer questions.
  • New appointment system.
  • New Procedure Manual providing a comprehensive step-by-step guide of the permitting process.
  • Improved navigation to tools and applications on the TRPA website.
  • Convenient lists and links to all references in the Code.
  • Expense monitoring system for application reviews.
Summary of Amendments (Effective November 26, 2023)

Please contact our consultant or our staff contact with questions or suggestions.

Arlo Stockham                                                               Jennifer Self
Stockham Consulting                                                                              (775) 589-5261
(775) 315-4231

More Information

Action Plan (TRPA Governing Board Endorsement, August 2022)
Implementation Report (TRPA Governing Board Endorsement, March 2023)

September 2023 TRPA Governing Board, Staff Summary of Proposed Amendments
October 2023 TRPA Governing Board, Staff Summary of Fee Adjustments