2012 Regional Plan Update

​2012 Regional Plan

The TRPA Governing Board voted on Dec. 12, 2012, to adopt and approve the Regional Plan documents available below.

Updates to the Lake Tahoe Regional Plan, originally adopted in 1987, aim to accelerate attainment of extraordinary environmental goals in part by improving the regulatory framework in the Region.

View the by-the-numbers fact sheet that looks into what the 2012 plan is projected to deliver for Lake Tahoe.

Most updates and amendments approved December 12 went into effect Feb. 11, 2013.

The documents in the table below were adopted on Dec. 12, 2012, however, further refinements and amendments may be made with approval of the TRPA Governing Board. For the most up-to-date version, refer to the newest documents by clicking here.

Clean Copy With Changes Tracked
Regional Plan Goals and Policies* Goals and Policies Comparison*
Regional Maps Regional Maps Comparison
Attachments Attachments Comparison
Code of Ordinances* Code of Ordinances Comparison*
Final Draft Lake Tahoe 208 Water Quality Management Plan Final Draft Lake Tahoe 208 Water Quality Management Plan Comparison

* Subsequent to the Dec. 12, 2012 approval, the separately approved amendments related to Homewood Mountain Resort and Edgewood Lodge projects have been included in the Goals & Policies and Code of Ordinances Documents.

The California State Resources Agency submitted a letter to state leaders affirming that the 2012 Regional Plan Update is consistent with the requirements of the Bi-State Tahoe Regional Planning Compact. California Resources Secretary Letter RPU March 27 2013

Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)

The Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Lake Tahoe Regional Plan Update posted below became available October 24, 2012. An unprecedented level of public input had been received on the plan and additional opportunities for public comment and discussion occurred at meetings in October, November and December, 2012.

The Final Environmental Impact Statement includes all comments received on the EIS during the public comment period, agency responses to comments, as well as all contents of the Draft EIS. In order to take action on the Regional Plan Update documents above, the TRPA Governing Board must first take action to certify the technical adequacy of the Final EIS. In addition the 21-member TRPA Advisory Planning Commission will evaluate the Plan documents and make a recommendation on the adequacy of the studies to the Governing Board.

Presentation Slideshow, October 24 & 25, 2012

Volume 1: Final Environmental Impact Statement

Single Document Download Format

Final Regional Plan EIS & Responses to Comments

Individual Chapter Download Format

Cover Title Page & TOC
Table of Contents
1 Introduction
2 Changes to the Draft Plan
3 Responses to Comments on the Draft EIS
4 Corrections and Revisions
5 References
Appendix A Final Draft Goals and Policies
Appendix B Final Draft Code of Ordinances
Appendix C Stormwater Modeling

Volume 2: Public Comments Received

Public Comments on the Draft EIS

Volume 3: April 2012 Draft Environmental Impact Statement

Single Document Download Format

Regional Plan EIS

Individual Chapter Download Format

Cover Title Page & TOC
0.1 Summary
1 Introduction
2 Alternatives
3.1 Affected Environment
3.2 Land Use
3.3 Transportation
3.4 Air Quality
3.5 Greenhouse Gases & Climate Change
3.6 Noise
3.7 Geology & Soils
3.8 Hydrology & Water Quality
3.9 Scenic Resources
3.10 Biological Resources
3.11 Recreation
3.12 Population, Employment & Housing
3.13 Public Services & Utilities
3.14 Hazards & Public Safety
3.15 Cultural Resources
4 Cumulative Impacts
5 TRPA Mandated Sections
6 Report Preparers
7 References

Appendices Single Document Download Format

Regional Plan EIS Appendices

Appendices Individual Chapter Download Format

Apdx A Alt 3 Goals & Policies
Apdx B Threshold Standards
Apdx C Transportation Strategy Packages
Apdx D Alt 4 Transect Plan Area Statements Crosswalk
Apdx E Transportation
Apdx F Air Quality & Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Apdx G Noise
Apdx H Coverage Methods
Apdx I Alt 3 Code Revisions


Regional Plan EIS References

April 2012 Regional Plan Draft EIS

The TRPA-proposed alternative studied by the Draft EIS below is based on the Draft Regional Plan Goals and Policies developed at Regional Plan Update Committee public hearings that began in October, 2011.

Draft Lake Tahoe Regional Plan

Overview Presentation to TRPA Governing Board April 25, 2012

Draft Goals and Policies

Draft Goals and Policies with Editing and Changes Tracked

Draft Land Use and Environmental Restoration Maps

State Leaders Mark the Release of the Lake Tahoe Regional Plan Update

State Resource Agencies Statement April 25, 2012.

Comments Received on the Draft Regional Plan and EIS July 13, 2012.

All comments received from April 25 through July 13, 2012 are available at the link above. Comments received during the EIS comment period that ended on June 28, 2012 are organized into four groups based on whether the comment is from a public agency, other organization, business, or private individual. Form letters that were submitted by multiple individuals are grouped together in sub-folders under the “Individuals” folder. References and supporting documents submitted with comments are organized into a separate folder. Multiple comments from the same entity are combined into one file, which includes a cover sheet listing each separate comment from that entity. Comments received after the close of the EIS comment period are included in a separate folder.

April Draft Code of Ordinances

The first phase of the TRPA Code of Ordinances Update was complete in March, 2012 when a reformatted and substantially improved Code went into effect. Phase 2 of the Code Update made more substantive revisions in order to implement policy updates of the Regional Plan Update, which was adopted by the TRPA Governing Board December 12, 2012. This second phase used the reorganized and reformatted code as a starting point, and included new and substantially modified sections to improve procedural efficiency and and the predictability of the development review process. The Draft Code of Ordinances was made available for public review April 25, 2012.

Draft TRPA Code of Ordinances

Draft TRPA Code of Ordinances with Editing and Changes Tracked

TRPA received extensive input on permit processing issues from a variety of stakeholders. These include people who use the TRPA code on a regular basis and who are familiar with current procedures such as local, state and federal government staff, architects, planners, engineers, conservation group members, realtors, developers, and service providers. These further updates are crucial to helping property owners do their part to restore Lake Tahoe and to improve air and water quality in the region. TRPA recognizes that the permit process at Lake Tahoe can be complex and that the revitalization of our town centers can be aided with these improvements.[/wpspoiler][wpspoiler name=”Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Milestone Documents” style=”ui-lightness”]Below is a quick comparison table of the five alternatives studied in the Environmental Impact Statement. A draft of the EIS was delivered in April, 2012 for public review final adoption of the Regional Plan Update passed on December 12, 2012.

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was prepared to determine the potential effect of changes to TRPA policies and management strategies. The documents below are descriptions of Regional Plan Amendments studied in the EIS. Each project description document includes the community’s vision statement derived from Pathway and Place-Based Planning workshops that form the foundation of the Plan Update. The project descriptions are laid out in a table format to compare alternative means to achieve the community’s vision.

You may want to view the EIS summary table first for a brief overview and description of the five alternatives.

Summary Table of EIS Alternatives–Updated February 23, 2012

These project descriptions have been updated as of Oct. 28, 2011.

Land Use
Air Quality
Water Quality
Community Design
Wildlife and Fisheries
Scenic Quality
Stream Environment Zones
Public Service


2011 Archive

Major Step Forward as the Regional Plan Alternatives Analysis Makes Headway

Following back-to-back unanimous votes by the TRPA Governing Board at their January 2011 meeting, TRPA staff was given the green light to begin a more focused environmental analysis of the four Regional Plan Update alternatives.

This is a significant step that follows a three-month effort to seek out and include additional stakeholder input on crafting the range of alternatives. The plan alternatives compare different strategies for the protection and restoration of Lake Tahoe. Finalizing the universe of alternatives for the Environmental Impact Statement to study is a critical step forward and means that a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) could be out for public review and comment before the end of the year. The Board could adopt updated policies in 2012. The second unanimous vote approved a more focused scope and process for the DEIS so that the RPU is set to deliver the most environmental gain on the ground–a major tenet of the TRPA Strategic Plan. When scoping of the RPU began in 2007, all 25 of the Regional Plan subelements were included for analysis in the EIS. Then two more were added under recreation. The Board’s vote validated staff’s recommendation that the scope was too broad to ensure the Plan could reach the adoption stage in 2012. TRPA staff asked the Board to allow the DEIS to focus on the most emergent, immediate aspects of the plan including Water Quality, Land Use, Transportation, Invasive Species and Catastrophic Wildfire Threats, Air Quality and Sustainability. This will allow the plan to be completed in a more effective manner. Within this more focused approach, lines of communication between the board, staff and stakeholder groups are to remain open and the EIS and Regional Plan documents will continue to be a living document.

The TRPA has collaborated with over 2,500 Lake Tahoe residents and visitors to provide the foundation of the Regional Plan Update. Together we are making your vision a reality.

Lake Tahoe Regional Plan Update (RPU) Alternatives

Lake Tahoe’s 1987 Regional Plan was updated in 2012. The documents below were circulated with stakeholder groups while detailed environmental studies got underway to compare four alternative scenarios for the Regional Plan Update. Below are the project description narratives and matrices of Goals, Policies and Implementation Measures associated with the original scope of the RPU. These documents are for reference as they were superseded by the revised scope of RPU alternatives published in July 2011.

The Lake Tahoe Regional Plan contains Goals and Policies, which in turn support Implementation Measures. The aim of the draft documents below is to assist anyone reviewing the list of proposed changes to understand how each measure could be affected in each alternative scenario. These Element and Subelement documents are descriptive narratives broken down by each Subelement of the plan.

TRPA has drafted four different Regional Plan Update scenarios, called Alternatives, for analysis in the Environmental Impact Statement. The alternatives provide a way of projecting and comparing the outcomes of different styles of management:

  • Alternative One is the “no project” alternative. Under this alternative no changes would be made except what is necessary to keep up with the regulations of other federal or state agencies.

  • Alternative Two, the alternative proposed by TRPA staff, focuses on a combination of incentives, regulation, and collaboration to achieve the environmental thresholds required by the Compact.

  • Alternative Three is largely like the “no project” Alternative One, except that it allows for development to continue at a pace very similar to the one we have seen over the past 20 years.

  • Alternative Four takes the approach that a decreased amount of allocations and an increased amount of regulation is the best way to ensure that the Thresholds are attained.

Also provided below are introductory Fact Sheets that discuss important issues that need to be addressed by the Regional Plan Update.

Regional Plan Update Narratives

Table of Contents and Introduction
Threshold Vision Statements and Alternative Descriptions
Land Use Element

Land Use Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Housing Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Noise Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Natural Hazards Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Air Quality Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Water Quality Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Community Design (Alternatives Matrix)

Transportation Element (Alternatives Matrix)
Conservation Element

Vegetation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Wildlife and Fisheries Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Soil Conservation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Shorezone Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Scenic Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Open Space Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Stream Environment Zone (SEZ) Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Cultural Resources Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Energy and Climate Change Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)

Recreation Element

Dispersed Recreation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Developed Recreation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Urban Recreation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
General Recreation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Recreation Education Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)

Public Services and Facilities Element (Alternatives Matrix)
Implementation Element

Institutional Partnerships Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Performance Review and Implementation Scheduling Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Environmental Improvement Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Education and Outreach Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)
Monitoring and Evaluation Subelement (Alternatives Matrix)



TRPA staff received direction from the TRPA Governing Board and the public through a series of presentations and Fact Sheets delivered in 2009 and 2010. They are included below as part of the previous progress to reach the Regional Plan Framework that was adopted in 2012.


Recap of First Phase of the Milestones, August 2010
Fact Sheet 3: Continued Followup– TAU Report, December 2010
Fact Sheet 5: Conservation, July 2010

Fact Sheet 5: Sideshow Presentation July 28, 2010
Fact Sheet 5: Follow-up

Fact Sheet 4: Transportation, Noise, and Energy & Climate Change, June 2010

Fact Sheet 4: Sideshow Presentation June 23, 2010
Fact Sheet 4: Follow-up

Fact Sheet 3: Land Use, May 2010

Fact Sheet 3: Sideshow Presentation May 26, 2010
Fact Sheet 3: Follow-up

Fact Sheet 2: Public Lands, Resource Management and Recreation, Feb. 2010

Fact Sheet 2: Slideshow Presentation February 24, 2010
Fact Sheet 2: Follow-up

Fact Sheet 1: Water Quality and Stream Environment Zones, Jan. 2010

Fact Sheet 1: Slideshow Presentation January 28, 2010
Fact Sheet 1: Follow-up

State of the Basin Educational Briefing, March 2010

Executive Summary
Final Report of Sustainability Measures
Tahoe Redevelopment Case Study: Feasibility Analysis
City of South Lake Tahoe Mikasa Site/Alternative 2
Lake Tahoe EIP 2010-2020: An Economic Analysis of Private Source Stormwater BMP Expenditures on Redevelopment Projects
Final Letter Report, Load Reduction Planning Tool

Slideshow Presentations

State of the Basin Introduction
Heavenly Mountain Resort Presentation
The Decline of Gaming at Tahoe
Sustainability Measures and Business Leader Presentations