At the Lake: 'Gruelingly long' meetings are predicted for fire commission

With a still-growing workload, members of the California-Nevada Tahoe Basin Fire Commission expressed concerns over a looming March deadline at a meeting Friday at Lake Tahoe Community College.

The commission has about 40 potential recommendations to decide on by March 21, said Kate Dargan, California state fire marshal and a co-chair of the commission.

An additional "10 to 20" possible recommendations could be added to the list in coming weeks.

"March meetings will be gruelingly long," Dargan said. "Just be prepared."

The commission was created after last summer's Angora fire to recommend ways to decrease Lake Tahoe Basin wildfire threats.

In December, the commission added three additional meetings to make the March deadline. The commission canceled its November meeting because of the Southern California wildfires.

Members of the public have until Feb. 15 to submit recommendations about basin wildfire threats.

Commission staff liaison Dana Cole initially had stated March 6 or 7 would be the last time the commission should reasonably expect to adopt recommendations.

"One thing I really dread is editing a document with a dozen recommendations, with 21 of us saying, 'I want this word and not that word,' " Cole said about what could happen at the meeting.

Cole urged commissioners and the public to use a specific form to submit recommendations, which should help shorten the review process.

The form and status of potential recommendations are available at the fire commission's Web site:

The site will be "continually updated as we move through the process," Cole said.


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