Truckee Town Council moves forward with findings from biomass, bioenergy study

By Zoe Meyer, Sierra Sun

March 27th, 2024

TRUCKEE, Calif. – The Truckee Town Council met on Tuesday, March 26, to discuss Wildephor Consulting’s Biomass/Bioenergy study involving the use of an Air Curtain Burner (ACB) to manage woody biomass.

There remains significant concern among community members regarding the environmental impacts of this project. Several community members have expressed a desire for more detailed clarification regarding the project. Despite these concerns and requests for clarity, the Council ultimately made the decision to proceed with the Biomass project as outlined in the study.

For a summary of the Bioenergy Feasibility Study, please refer to the previous Sierra Sun article at

The Council received updates from Staff and the River Revitalization Steering Committee concerning the ongoing progress of the River Revitalization project. One of the key agenda items was the authorization for the Town Manager to execute a contract amendment with East River Public Relations, aimed at increasing the contract amount by $50,000 to reach a total of $90,000. This increase was intended to bolster project communications, outreach efforts, and the development of outreach collateral.

The meeting began with a brief reminder of the overarching purpose behind their efforts, highlighting the river as a focal point for the town’s development strategies over the years. Recent momentum in downtown development, particularly with the West River Park Project, has underscored the importance of incentivizing the revitalization of the river corridor. This effort aligns closely with the town’s General Plan update, which has integrated various policies, goals, and development standards specifically tailored to the river corridor’s land use and planning.

A significant step in the revitalization process outlined in the town’s draft FY 2023/24 workplan was the formation of a stakeholder advisory committee. This committee, currently comprising 18 members, serves as a platform for community input and engagement in the revitalization endeavors, focusing initially on aspects such as river health, access, community vitality, and enhancing the overall atmosphere of the area.

To facilitate broader community involvement, the Council announced upcoming opportunities for participation, including the invitation for interested parties to join action teams integral to the project’s implementation. The deadline for applications to these action teams was set for this Friday, March 29. Additionally, a community engagement window for feedback and review of project goals and themes was scheduled for April 15 through early May, with exact dates to be confirmed soon.

Further enhancing community engagement, the Council planned in-person workshops, including one at the river’s Northern Trailhead on April 27 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and a second workshop conducted in Spanish, tentatively scheduled for late April or the first week of May.

The Council ultimately decided to approve the contract amendment, increasing the funding by $50,000 to support aspects of the project, including communication strategies, outreach initiatives, and the creation of outreach materials essential for effective community engagement and project progress.

The consent calendar was approved with the exception of item 6.6 regarding support for Assembly Bill 2234, which focuses on Electric Bicycle Safety Training. The recommended action was for the Council to authorize the Mayor to sign a letter of support for this bill. However, there was a point of contention regarding the support for age limitations within the bill. The Council indicated that they support the bill if amended to remove the age limitation clause. However, Mayor Dave Polivy expressed a different stance and proposed pulling the action entirely, suggesting a reevaluation or alternative approach.

Council held a public hearing to discuss the 2024 Development Code Update, outlined in Ordinance 2024-04. The recommended action for the Council included conducting the hearing and introducing the ordinance to amend various sections of the Truckee Municipal Code related to Zoning District Regulations, Trailhead Parking, Retaining Walls, Downtown Parking, Home Occupations, Detached Living Areas, Food Trucks, Demolition Review, and Clean-Up Amendments.

In honor of Women’s History Month, Nevada County Poet Laureate Kirsten Casey recited a poem titled, “Objects in the Pockets of Women in History.”

Truckee High’s Hope Squad students participated in a proclamation for Hope Week. This initiative holds particular importance as suicide was the 11th leading cause of death in the US in 2021, with California ranking 45th in the nation for suicide deaths. In response, TTUSD established the Hope Squads in 2020, a peer-to-peer suicide prevention program. These students, nominated by their peers, planned and executed events during Hope Week from March 11-15 to promote a message of hope and support within the Truckee community.

Truckee was acknowledged for its unique cultural standing as the only cultural district in the High Sierra region and one of only four rural cultural districts in California. The month of April is officially recognized as Art, Culture, and Creativity Month, highlighting the town’s commitment to nurturing and celebrating artistic expression and cultural diversity.

Visitor enjoyment in Tahoe is notably above the national average, indicating a strong desire for Truckee to evolve into a world-class cultural and arts destination alongside its existing reputation as a recreational hub. The forthcoming plans include developing a countywide arts and culture master plan, fostering inclusive community engagement, creating a shared cultural vision, establishing a roadmap for community action, and launching a regional marketing campaign. This comprehensive approach emphasizes the belief that “Artwork is real work.”

The next Town Council meeting will be on Tuesday, Apr. 9 at 5 p.m at Town Hall, 10183 Truckee Airport Road.

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