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Mountain Housing Council of Tahoe Truckee to Update Community on Housing

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The Mountain Housing Council of Tahoe Truckee is scheduled to hold its annual housing meeting in Kings Beach on April 28th. Topics will include impact fees and new housing options.

The meeting will also cover the Council’s first year progress report, what the Council is working on next, a discussion panel, and a solutions pitch.

The event starts at 9 a.m. at the North Tahoe Event Center at 8318 North Lake Blvd. To find out more and to RSVP, go to mountainhousingcouncil.org

The Mountain Housing Council of Tahoe Truckee held is second meeting last October, to discuss ways to fix their current housing crisis. A study sponsored by Nevada County, Placer County, and Truckee discovered over 60% of residents can't afford to buy or rent a home in the area, and the Mountain Housing Council was created from that study, in order to help address that very problem.

Donald Terry, Director of Real Estate Development for NeighborWorks Sacramento Branch, said he believes the housing crisis in North Tahoe is quite severe.

"The biggest economic challenge we have is our housing crisis," Terry said. "And this microcosm of a housing market around the lake is ten times worse than a lot of other places."

Businesses in the area often have to limit hours or stay close because many of their employees live over an hour away from work. Add weather to the mix, and it only increases the chance for the business to struggle.

"They can't even get to work half the time because they're stuck in traffic," Kristen York, Vice President of Business Innovation for Sierra Business Council, said. "And then add on a big snowstorm and shutting our major freeway 80, it's very problematic for the community, you have businesses that flat out can't open."

The ways to fix the problem include making homes easier to buy, and allowing people to change how they use their land. York said it's important the area becomes more flexible with its policy.

"Allowing more housing units or multi-family housing units on a plot of land and that's really important."

Teresa-May Duggon is a Tahoe Vista resident who would like to update her property, but is limited with what she can do, so she hasn't done anything yet.

"I'm tired of the sticks, I've been hit by sticks now for 40 years and I want to see the carrots." Duggon said. "Where are the carrots? Show me the way, because I'm going to redevelop my parcel, but to take down four and put up four, there's no win there."

Terry said there are many ways to make purchasing a home easier. There are non-profits like NeighborWorks and government programs that can provide relief to construction or down payment costs. Terry said whatever option the region chooses, that people in the community need to buy in.

"There are a lot of different models and success stories that we could be embracing" Terry said. "But it takes political will and it takes people admitting there's a problem and that they to be part of the solution."

Terry says he sees people acknowledging the problem, and stepping up to find solutions.

You can find more information about what the council has discussed on their website: https://mountainhousingcouncil.org/

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