Agencies to host public workshop on Meeks Bay Restoration Project

Agencies to host public workshop on Meeks Bay Restoration Project

LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev. – The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU) is developing a plan to restore Meeks Creek to a more natural condition, while continuing to support sustainable recreation opportunities. The LTBMU, in conjunction with Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, and Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, will host a virtual public workshop on the project from 5:30-7:30 pm on August 19, 2020.

Meeks Bay’s development legacy dates back to 1960 when the marina of approximately 120 boat slips and a boat launch facility was dredged at the mouth of Meeks Creek, on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe. The marina eliminated unique wetland habitat for numerous bird, mammal, and amphibian species. The deteriorating condition of the existing marina infrastructure, along with concerns over water quality, aquatic invasive species, and degraded habitat for native species prompted the need for action in Meeks Bay.

“We’re excited to be moving forward with this high priority project,” said Acting Deputy Forest Supervisor, Matthew Jedra. “The site is just downstream from the Washoe Tribe’s restoration of Meeks Meadow. Combined, these projects will improve conditions for wildlife species and restore a critical section of the Meeks Creek Watershed.”

The proposed project aims to:

  • Restore a functioning stream and lagoon ecosystem
  • Control and eradicate aquatic invasive species
  • Enhance fish and wildlife habitat
  • Provide sustainable recreation opportunities and access
  • Improve educational and interpretive opportunities
  • Restore habitat for Tahoe yellow cress, Lahontan cutthroat trout, and species of value to the Washoe Tribe

“Meeks Bay is an iconic part of Lake Tahoe and connects the indigenous stewards of Lake Tahoe, the Washoe people, to a modern restoration opportunity,” said Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Executive Director Joanne S. Marchetta. “We are pleased to be part of the partnership to restore this incredible resource.”

The public workshop on Wednesday, August 19 from 5:30-7:30 pm will introduce the project and planning process, describe the site’s history and the need for restoration, and introduce alternative themes and solicit input on alternative considerations.

In addition to public workshops, a representative stakeholder forum will explore concepts and evaluate ideas that will inform the planning process and ensure the environmental analysis includes the best information and science. The stakeholder forum includes community groups, property owner associations, and the Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California, among others. The agencies expect to have draft alternatives ready for public input by summer of 2021.

Learn more about the project and public workshops at www.meeksbayproject.org.

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The Meeks Bay Restoration Project aims to restore Meeks Creek to a more natural condition while continuing to support sustainable recreation opportunities. This project is multi-year collaborative initiative convened by the USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, and Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board, to engage key community groups and the public at large in the development of project alternatives. Learn more at www.meeksbayproject.org.

The mission of the U.S. Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the nation’s clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year. The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live. USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency leads the cooperative effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, while improving local communities, and people’s interactions with our irreplaceable environment. For additional information, contact Jeff Cowen, Public Information Officer, at 775-589-5278.

Agencies extend deadline for public input on Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project

Click here to view the Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project Scoping Notice / Notice of Preparation

 

South Lake Tahoe, CA — The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU), California Tahoe Conservancy (Conservancy), and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) have extended the scoping period for the proposed Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project until May 26, 2020.

The LTBMU, Conservancy and TRPA developed the Scoping Notice/Notice of Preparation to provide information to the public about the proposed project and the environmental effects that the three agencies will analyze. The project documents are on the LTBMU’s Projects webpage at https://go.usa.gov/xmgxT. Scroll down to the “Developing Proposal” heading and select the “Lake Tahoe West” link. Project documents are listed under the “Scoping” tab. To comment, select the “Comment/Object on Project” link under the “Get Connected” heading in the right-hand column. Comments must be submitted or posted by 11:59 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time) on May 26, 2020.

The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project is proposed to reduce wildfire risks to communities, improve forest health, protect and enhance habitat for native plants and animals, and protect lake clarity. Together, these actions are proposed to help restore the resilience of West Shore forests, watersheds, and communities in the face of climate change.The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, California Tahoe Conservancy, and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency seek public input on the proposed Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project. This project will restore forests, meadows, streams, and wildlife habitat across the West Shore of the Lake Tahoe Basin.

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The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Partnership is a collaborative, multiple-stakeholder effort led by the USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, California Tahoe Conservancy, California State Parks, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, Tahoe Fire and Fuels Team, and National Forest Foundation. Stakeholders and partners represent tribes, conservation groups, fire protection agencies, the recreation community, homeowners and businesses, scientists, local government, and others with a stake in the resilience of Lake Tahoe’s West Shore. For more information on the Lake Tahoe West Restoration Partnership, visit LakeTahoeWest.org.

Agencies Seek Public Input on Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project

Agencies Seek Public Input on Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project

Click here to view the Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project Scoping Notice / Notice of Preparation

 

South Lake Tahoe, CA — The USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, California Tahoe Conservancy, and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency seek public input on the proposed Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project. This project will restore forests, meadows, streams, and wildlife habitat across the West Shore of the Lake Tahoe Basin.

The West Shore landscape is vulnerable to high-severity wildfire, drought, climate change, and forest insect and disease outbreaks. The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project will use forest thinning, prescribed burning, reforestation, and habitat restoration in streams, meadows, lakes, and forests to improve the landscape’s resilience to future disturbances.

“The Forest Service and our partners are eager to move forward with the public in this significant landscape-scale restoration strategy,” said Acting Forest Supervisor, Danelle D. Harrison. “Lake Tahoe West serves as a turning point in the way land managers think about restoration projects that increase the pace and scale of forest restoration needed to protect our communities and Lake Tahoe.”

The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project is based on the comprehensive Landscape Restoration Strategy developed by the Lake Tahoe West Restoration Partnership. The Strategy, released in December 2019, provides a science-based, all-lands approach to guide restoration approaches on the West Shore over the next two decades to increase resilience of ecosystems and human communities.

The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project will reduce wildfire risks to communities, improve forest health, protect and enhance habitat for native plants and animals, and protect lake clarity. Together, these actions will help restore the resilience of West Shore forests, watersheds, and communities in the face of climate change.

“It is paramount that we continue to prioritize forest health projects like Lake Tahoe West that strive to keep our region safe and resilient,” said Tahoe Regional Planning Agency Executive Director Joanne S. Marchetta. “We will continue to work tirelessly with our partners to ensure that the public process remains inclusive and robust to best serve our communities.”

The project area covers approximately 59,000 acres in the western portion of the Lake Tahoe Basin and consists of federal, state, local, and private lands. The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project will more than double the amount of forest restoration conducted each year on the West Shore.

The Forest Service, Conservancy, and TRPA have developed a Scoping Notice / Notice of Preparation to provide information to the public about the proposed project and the environmental effects that the three agencies will analyze. The project is on the LTBMU’s Projects webpage at https://go.usa.gov/xmgxT. Scroll down to “Developing Proposal” and select the “Lake Tahoe West” link. To review the Scoping Notice / Notice of Preparation on the “Lake Tahoe West” project webpage under Project Documents, select  the “Scoping” tab.

To Comment: On the “Lake Tahoe West” project webpage and under the right-hand column heading “Get Connected,” select the “Comment/ Object on Project” link. Comments must be submitted or posted by 11:59 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time) on May 11, 2020.

The agencies will also host two public meetings to share information about the project. The meetings will provide members of the public an opportunity to learn more about the proposed action and about the content of the environmental analysis document. The agencies are concerned for the health and safety of community members and staff and will ensure that scoping meetings are conducted on a virtual platform on the following dates and times:

Tahoe Regional Planning Agency

Governing Board Meeting

April 22, 2020

Check www.trpa.gov on April 15, 2020  for link to virtual meeting.

 

USDA Forest Service

Lake Tahoe West Public Meeting

April 28, 2020 at 4:30 pm

Check https://go.usa.gov/xmgxT on April 15, 2020 for link to a virtual meeting.

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The Lake Tahoe West Restoration Partnership is a collaborative, multiple-stakeholder effort led by the USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, California Tahoe Conservancy, California State Parks, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, Tahoe Fire and Fuels Team, and National Forest Foundation. Stakeholders and partners represent tribes, conservation groups, fire protection agencies, the recreation community, homeowners and businesses, scientists, local government, and others with a stake in the resilience of Lake Tahoe’s West Shore. For more information on the Lake Tahoe West Restoration Partnership, visit LakeTahoeWest.org.