2/2/16 Dream Home
In 2007, the Angora wildfire destroyed more than 300 homes and businesses near Californiaâ€™s Lake Tahoe.
One of the 240 homes destroyed sat for 30 years at 889 Lake Tahoe Boulevard. It was in a residentially-zoned area. It was nestled among homes on a paved street with concrete curbs. The property had electricity, water, sewage and telephone hook-ups.
The location was perfect for Ray and Theresa Burns. In 2009, they bought the lot in a foreclosure auction. They planned to build a dream home for their family. And their two elderly, disabled mothers.
The Burns worked with the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency before the purchase. Of course, you can rebuild a home on the lot, the TRPA told them.
The couple consulted with the agency and other local authorities on the building plans. They spent 1400-dollars to buy a lot allocation, as required by local ordinance. They were going to build an environmentally-conscious green home on the previous homeâ€™s footprint.
But shortly before construction began, TRPA had a change of heart. Vegetation that grew where a home once stood and a nearby stream convinced these bureaucrats this was protected lot. It was placed off-limits for development.
The TRPAâ€™s actions donâ€™t pass the common-sense test.