Worries still loom over trails plan | TheUnion.com

Worries still loom over trails plan

The Nevada County trails plan will come back before county supervisors today.

Supervisors delayed accepting the plan in June when some south county residents expressed misgivings about it possibly attracting hikers onto private property to use the historic Emigrant Trail, which crosses the southern part of the county.

In the interim, officials have met with neighborhood groups concerned about the plan, which originally displayed a map of all county trail easements for the historic trail going through the Golden Oaks, Sunshine Valley and Lodestar neighborhoods, connecting to Highway 49, said Planning Director Jory Stewart.

Easterners traveling to the Sierra Nevada used the trail during the mid-1800s Gold Rush era.

County officials use the trail plan when planning new subdivisions to ensure public access to trails is preserved, Stewart said.

Resident concerns were used to tweak the trail plan’s presentation, Stewart said.

“As a result, we took that original map and separated it onto two maps,” one detailing all public trails, and the other showing the easements across private property, which is for planning use only, Stewart said.

Residents are still wary of the trails plan.

“I’m pleased they are working with the three neighborhoods in the group, but I don’t think they’ve adequately addressed our concerns,” said Debbie Porter, president of the Golden Oaks homeowner association. The Emigrant Trail easement may not accurately follow the historic trail, Porter said; the easement map as presently drawn has the trail going along one side of her property.

The supervisors directed staff to add firmer language in regard to the use of eminent domain to designate a trail for recreational use. The county cannot use eminent domain unless requested by a private property owner to obtain land for recreational use, a staff report on the item said.

The supervisors meet today at 9 a.m. at the Rood Center on 950 Maidu Ave. in Nevada City. The trails plan item is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.

To contact Staff Writer Kyle Magin, e-mail kmagin@theunion.com or call (530) 477-4239.

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