Nevada City requests Sierra Nevada Conservancy headquarters |

Nevada City requests Sierra Nevada Conservancy headquarters

The Sierra Nevada Conservancy bill is one signature shy of enactment, but cities are already vying to be headquarters for the group that would protect the Sierras from Kern County in the south to Modoc County in the north.

The city that wins the bid could potentially gain dozens of jobs – something that Nevada City has decided it would like to have. The Nevada City City Council voted unanimously Monday to support having the headquarters within the city limits, and now they await for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s signature on the bill.

One requirement of the bill is that the headquarters must be located within the boundaries the conservancy covers. This may include a large swath of land, but former Nevada County Supervisor and Sierra Fund representative Elizabeth “Izzy” Martin is pushing to have it in Nevada City.

The Sierra Fund was instrumental in getting the bill passed in Sacramento recently and Martin was a key player.

“It makes a lot of sense to have Nevada City as the headquarters,” Martin said. One reason she cited is because this is the home of the largest hydraulic mine in the Sierras. This is one example of the wealth and destruction that led to some of the issues facing conservationists today, Martin explained.

Another reason is that Nevada City was a pioneer in supporting the conservancy bill.

“Nevada City was the first city to endorse the Sierra Conservancy,” Martin said. Nevada City’s endorsement was followed by the City of San Francisco.

Martin says she has hopes that not only the headquarters will be in Nevada City, but that Gov. Schwarzenegger will make an appearance in the County when he signs the bill. The new conservancy would be ruled by 13 board members – six appointed by counties, five by the governor, and two from the state Legislature.

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