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Supervisors to Hold Hearing on Granite Bay Community Plan, Review Donner Condo Project, Consider Tahoe Golf Course Deal

February 27, 2012

The newly updated Granite Bay Community Plan, a Donner Summit condominium project and a local agency’s bid to purchase the Tahoe City Golf Course will be considered by the Placer County Board of Supervisors Tuesday.

The board will hold public hearings before deciding whether to adopt the updated community plan for Granite Bay and approve Sierra Sun Villas, a 12-unit, three-story condominium project proposed for nine acres on the north side of Donner Pass Road across from Sugar Bowl Resort.

The Tahoe City Public Utility District (PUD) has agreed to purchase the golf course for $5 million from the family that currently owns it. The course is located at the intersection of Highways 28 and 89 in the heart of Tahoe City.

The golf course transaction is scheduled to come before the Board of Supervisors because of a proposal by the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association to invest up to $2.6 million in the acquisition.

The Resort Association’s investment would come from transient occupancy tax (TOT) revenue Placer County collects at North Lake Tahoe and distributes to the association for transportation and infrastructure projects, tourism marketing and visitor information services. The tax is a surcharge paid by people who rent rooms in hotels, motels and other lodging establishments.

Under the association’s agreement with the county, infrastructure expenditures must be approved by the Board of Supervisors.

The Tahoe City PUD has lined up several potential partners to help finance the golf course acquisition. Placer County is considering a direct contribution of $100,000 in park dedication fees and $200,000 from its open space fund.

The golf course site includes five parcels that cover approximately 45 acres, making it the largest land holding in Tahoe City. In a report to the board, county staff notes the property serves as an open-space buffer adjacent to the community’s downtown area and has high value as an open space and recreation corridor for golf or other uses in the future.

The Granite Bay plan provides a framework and vision for the community’s long-term growth and orderly development. Originally adopted in 1989, the plan has undergone minor revisions periodically, including an update of its circulation element in 2005.

Both the Placer County Planning Commission and Granite Bay Municipal Advisory Council are recommending board approval of the updated plan.

“I am very pleased to see the update process reach a successful conclusion,” said 4th District Supervisor Kirk Uhler. “It has been a great example of local government in action. Hundreds of residents participated in two community meetings and almost two dozen people were involved every step of the way, including 17 meetings of a Granite Bay MAC subcommittee. The plan’s vision will guide us in our efforts to ensure that Granite Bay remains one the finest communities in our region.”

Placer County began updating the community plan in 2008. In August, 2010, the board decided against making any land-use changes in the plan, but to have staff and community members continue working to update the plan’s goals, policies and regulations.

Though the updated plan does not include land-use changes, property owners still have the option of applying for site-specific land use and zoning changes.

The updated plan includes:

  • Current information about the community, including its residential holding capacity, infrastructure and environmental conditions;
  • Revised goals, policies and programs to address existing constraints and new opportunities;
  • Modifications to goals and policies that provide more clarity and readability; and
  • Discussion of topics such as greenhouse gas emissions, the proposed Placer County Conservation Plan and low-impact design issues that have emerged since the original community plan was adopted.

The proposed plan lowers the community’s projected maximum holding capacity from 29,000 to 26,000 residents because some areas have developed with lower densities than was anticipated in the original plan.

Sierra Sun Villas needs a general plan amendment to change the site’s land use designation from agriculture/timberland to tourist resort-commercial. The board also will be asked to approve a rezoning request for the project.

On a unanimous vote Dec. 8, the Planning Commission approved a conditional use permit and tentative subdivision map for the project and recommended to the board approval of the general plan amendment and rezoning. In a report to the board, county staff emphasizes the site is not suitable for timber production.

Tuesday’s meeting will be held at 9 a.m. in the Board of Supervisors Chambers at the County Administrative Center, 175 Fulweiler Ave., in Auburn.