April 2020 Conservancy Newsletter

Upper Truckee River

April 2020 Conservancy Newsletter

Despite unprecedented challenges, the California Tahoe Conservancy’s work moves forward.

Almost everything has changed. Like so many, all Conservancy staff now work remotely. Their health, and the health of the community, comes first. But our commitment to protecting Lake Tahoe remains steadfast.

We are advancing years-planned projects such as the Lake Tahoe West and Upper Truckee Marsh restoration projects. We are responding to the concerns of neighbors about hazard trees and other issues on our lands. We are helping to communicate how people can enjoy the outdoors safely.

As we look ahead, we will work with our Basin partners to stand up work crews to restore and treat our lands, while taking care to protect crew members and the public. We’ll also continue to provide funding for partner projects that will keep people employed while helping to achieve the Conservancy’s mission: to restore and enhance the extraordinary natural and recreational resources of the Lake Tahoe Basin.

Stay well,
Patrick Wright
Executive Director, California Tahoe Conservancy

Virtual Public Meeting: Affordable Housing on Conservancy Land in South Lake Tahoe

Virtual Public Meeting: Affordable Housing on Conservancy Land in South Lake Tahoe

Thursday, April 23 | Noon-1:30 p.m.

The California Tahoe Conservancy and its partners will host a virtual meeting on April 23 to update the community about housing needs and potential solutions using two Conservancy “asset land” parcels near the South Tahoe “Y.” Community members can participate to learn more and provide input on the effort, which is based on a collaborative effort underway to address housing affordability at Tahoe.

Learn more.

Agencies seek public input on Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project

Agencies seek public input on Lake Tahoe West Restoration Project

The Conservancy, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, and USDA Forest Service Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit 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.

Learn more

Upper Truckee Marsh Restoration Starts This Spring

Upper Truckee Marsh Restoration Starts This Spring

This spring, the California Tahoe Conservancy will kick off a long-planned project to restore and enhance the Upper Truckee Marsh, the largest wetland in the Lake Tahoe Basin. Restoring the Marsh will enrich native fish and bird habitat, while improving water quality and helping to protect Lake Tahoe. The Conservancy will also enhance public access and recreation opportunities in the northwest corner of the Marsh. Stay tuned for more detailed news about the project details and timing.

Learn more.

Managing Public Lands in Times of Crisis

Managing Public Lands in Times of Crisis

Our staff continues to manage the Conservancy’s nearly 4,700 properties in the Lake Tahoe Basin, many of which are smaller than a third of an acre and sit among residential neighborhoods. Essential work includes responding to citizen reports, dealing with hazard trees, and more. Although all Conservancy staff members are now working remotely, you can still report issues on Conservancy lands any time by visiting tahoe.ca.gov/report or by calling (530) 542-5580.

It’s okay to go out, but stay close to home… and far from everyone else. Learn more about how Tahoe agencies are encouraging physical distancing in response to traffic increases in the outdoors.

Learn more

Conservancy Staff Grows

Sara Cutuli

Sara Cutuli

Staff Attorney

Sara joined the Conservancy staff in February 2020. As staff attorney, she supports all aspects of the Conservancy’s legal needs. Sara works closely with Conservancy staff and Lake Tahoe Basin partners on developing and reviewing environmental and transactional documents, as well as other environmental, natural resource, and public law issues affecting the Conservancy. Before joining the Conservancy, she had experience as a private-sector environmental lawyer and as a clerk for the New Jersey Supreme Court. Sara earned degrees in Conservation Resource Studies and Italian Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and she earned her law degree from Rutgers Law School.

Chris Mertens

Chris Mertens

Senior Policy Analyst and North Lake Tahoe Liaison

Chris rejoined the Conservancy staff in February 2020 as Senior Policy Analyst and North Lake Tahoe Liaison. He focuses on tracking regional and state policy and collaboration with north shore partners to advance the Conservancy’s mission and programs. Prior to his current role, Chris served as the Government Affairs Director at Sierra Business Council, where he advanced policies that achieve economic, environmental, and social benefits for the Sierra Nevada region, and before that he had served in an earlier role at the Conservancy. Based in Truckee, Chris graduated from the University of California, Davis with a degree in political science.