Nevada County town hall meeting on parks draws crowd |

Nevada County town hall meeting on parks draws crowd

State and local officials on Thursday provided a snapshot of their state parks and fire coverage at a town hall meeting hosted by state Assemblyman Brian Dahle.

A range of officials that included representatives from Cal Fire, the state Department of Parks & Recreation and Nevada County supervisors updated about 80 attendees at the Nevada City Elks Lodge and fielded questions about issues related to state parks.

Supervisor Hank Weston said county officials want to make partnerships with groups involved in state parks. He hopes state officials treat the parks like a core service and get the priority treatment they deserve.

“It should at least get as much attention as a bullet train,” Weston said to applause.

One draw to the area is the Bridgeport Covered Bridge, at the South Yuba River State Park. Officials recently learned the bridge now has a $3.9 million price tag for its rehabilitation. Initial estimates were $1.3 million.

Doug Moon, chairman of the Save Our Bridge Committee, said the revised estimate came from an extensive project assessment.

“Like I said, this is a campaign and it’s not over,” Moon said. “Look forward to some future email blasts.”

Turning the discussion to fire, Cal Fire representatives focused on the drought.

Helge Eng, deputy director of resources management, argued the importance of prescribed burns.

Planned burns with oversight can remove fuel for fire that otherwise could lead to wildfires.

“If we do it right, prescribed burns can really help us out,” Eng said.

Weston said he wants more focus on fire prevention, saying prevention efforts get cut when budgets are trimmed.

He encouraged homeowners to clear a defensible space and help with prevention efforts.

“This is the best time to get people out there and cleaning up now,” Weston added.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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