I am honored to be the Chamber President and look forward to a year of growth and learning while I serve the local businesses and community members. My experience is in Real Estate, and I have been a licensed agent in South Lake Tahoe since 2004. Since then I have served as a volunteer for the Association of REALTORS® on committees and as their president in 2011. My interests in service haven’t been restricted to Real Estate, and I have volunteered in multiple local groups and committees over the years. Serving others is a passion of mine and is not a wholly selfless act as it brings me great pleasure and joy.
As a personal business owner, I understand the hardship and struggles small businesses have in our community. The Chamber has always had a goal of helping all businesses in our community but has always held a special place for the smaller businesses in South Lake Tahoe. That is still the case today, and over the next year, at my direction, we will continue to do all we can to assist small businesses in our community.
Things seem to be changing daily in our community, and the Chamber has stayed involved in every issue. We have taken the lead on many issues and will continue to do so in the future. Some of the things we are working on this coming year are updating the sign ordinance and submitting it to the City for approval, continuing to monitor and fight for the community on the Loop Road project, and work to improve the availability of work-force housing.
While it is a national issue, the lack of affordable housing has hit our community hard over the past couple of years. Rent prices have risen dramatically, and supply of available units is very low. This has caused a lot of hardship with the locals, especially those in the lower income brackets. Other communities have the option to build new housing and apartment developments, but in Tahoe our building restrictions limit new construction to just a handful of units per year. Plus there are not enough incentives to encourage builders to construct affordable housing instead of larger high-end private residences that bring a higher return on investment. The Chamber is dedicated to working with the City and other local agencies and non-profit groups to find ways to create new affordable housing for our workforce, while still protecting the individual rights of property owners and not forcing their hand on the issue. By opening up more available housing we hope that will make it easier for local businesses to find employees and ease the financial burden on lower income households.
As we reach the last year of this decade, we look forward to what the next decade will bring. We understand change is hard for some, especially those who follow the idea of “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it”. But that mentality leads us to stay stuck in the past, and soon you realize the rest of the world has left you behind and you are playing catch-up. Instead the Chamber will look forward and cautiously embrace change, while at the same time look to the past for direction and experience.
We may be small, but we are mighty! And we will not let up on our work for the South Lake Tahoe community we all love.
South Tahoe Chamber of Commerce