STAR Receives State Grant for Advocacy & Policy Education

January 31, 2012
By Theresa Souers, 2012 Public Relations Chair

The California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) recently recognized the South Tahoe Association of REALTORS® (STAR) for representing the rights of property homeowners throughout the South Lake Tahoe area.  During the C.A.R. Business meetings held in Indian Wells the week of January 17th, C.A.R. awarded the South Tahoe Association of REALTORS® with a $5,000 state IMPAC grant.  The purpose of the grant is to pay for STAR’s Government Affairs Director (GAD), Haley Williamson to attend the accelerated Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) meetings focused on updating its regional plan.  Williamson is also responsible for representing South Tahoe REALTORS® at these meetings and for bringing information back to the STAR Board of Directors.  In addition, the state IMPAC funds will allow STAR association members to learn about the new laws affecting our region through advocacy and education on policy such as new zoning ordinances, height restrictions, and community goals that the TRPA is considering.

This update to TRPA’s basin-wide plan will be the first since the late 1980s.  The TRPA’s regional planning committee is holding meetings throughout the winter and spring of 2011-2012.  The TRPA intends to have the new Regional Plan in place by the end of 2012.  At TRPA planning meetings, stakeholders meet all day to discuss how they want to update the regional plan. STAR’s representation is felt to be vital as the TRPA’s regional plan will have a direct affect on how people buy and sell homes in the Tahoe Basin.  The TRPA has requirements instructing REALTORS® to give out disclosures regarding TRPA regulations to homebuyers and home sellers.  The TRPA says in its own mission statement that it relies on public-private relationships to meet environmental goals.

Along with C.A.R.’s recognition of the importance for STAR’s involvement with decisions that could affect the South Tahoe area, they acknowledged that the decisions made by the TRPA could have an effect on the state of California as well.  If the TRPA passes ordinances mandating actions at point-of-sale, it may set a precedent for other point-of-sale mandates across the state.  Furthermore, since the TRPA must abide by California’s new sustainable communities law (passed in 2010), how the TRPA interprets and implements these California statewide laws will set a statewide precedent.  For this reason, C.A.R. has encouraged STAR to seek a similar grant on the National level and offered to assist in the effort to do so.


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