A study session on ongoing issues with noise, overcrowding and safety on Tulloch Reservoir in Copperopolis associated with summer vacation rentals will occupy the Calaveras County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday morning.
The board directed staff to draw up a noise ordinance in 2008 that never came to fruition. In the meantime, the reservoir has continued to be popular, crowded and loud, much to the chagrin of many full-time and part-time residents along its shores.
The county’s rivers and numerous reservoirs draw a lot of visitors in the warmest months of the year, but Tulloch is unique in that it is the only such body of water lined with homes along its shores, county Planning Director Rebecca Willis noted in her report to the board.
“Large numbers of motorized boats tend to create amplified noise and with the narrowness of Lake Tulloch, the noise tends to travel across the water,” the report states.
“The amplified noise from the boat motors, music on board the watercraft and dock activities can affect numerous homesites up and down the waterfront. Summer parties that target the younger crowd tend to involve large numbers of boats, continuous music and excessive alcohol consumption which had led to various public safety concerns.”
The rentals, which can go for as much as $800 a night, are inadequately monitored by owners and property managers, the report finds, and the staff recommendation to the board is to amend county code to place stricter guidelines on such use of those properties including occupancy limits and “quiet hours.”
In other business, the board will consider a one-year $54,000 agreement with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to fund a trapper for nuisance animals. When the board considered cutting funding for the position during a study session last year, it agreed to keep the trapper on after vocal protest from numerous residents during an April hearing.