Insider's Guide

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City Council Agenda items and other items of interest to the City Manager 

February 9, 2018

Happy Friday!

Here is what’s up for the next City Council meeting (set for Tuesday, February 13) that might be of interest to you. Below, I try to summarize items that caught my attention. I don’t summarize the whole agenda, though.

Study Session is at 4:30 p.m. with the Regular Session at 7 p.m. More information about where the Council meets and public comment opportunities are at the bottom.

During the Study Session, we’ll discuss:

  • An update on All Things John Wayne Airport.  We’ve been trying to update you more often, because a lot is going on. If you can’t make the meeting, I did a recent letter that we put on the website
  • Some ideas to upgrade some of the audio and visual aspects of the City Council Chambers. We’ve been here in the new Civic Center almost five years now (hard to believe!), and some things are being used differently than we thought in that room. And, AV technology has raced ahead of what we installed back in 2012-ish. There is an opportunity to use specially-designated funds for these changes, so Council Member Peotter wanted us to explore that further with the public and Council. 

The Regular Session at 7 p.m. has these items of note:

  • A reiteration (and maybe formal adoption) of what we (staff) thought we heard at the Council’s annual planning session.  Basically, that’s (a) to start on a “Port Plan” that would be akin to an LCP for the waters of Newport Harbor; (b) continue full speed ahead on our Harbor Operations tasks, including improving customer service to boaters, visitors, and others on and around the harbor; and (c) to hold off on an immediate dive into a General Plan Update, instead spending some months going about the community hearing more about what’s working, what’s not, etc – in other words, asking you what you think. I may have entirely misread the Council (I can do that), so this item could still be adjusted at the meeting by Council members.  
  • An item would adopt a resolution associated with issuing subpoenas to those who may have (allegedly) broken election law associated with signature gathering in the recent recall petition effort. The City Charter has allowed the Council to do things like this. For more information about the subject, I would encourage you to click on the agenda and read the staff report (agenda item #7).
  • We have had a practice of “sunshining” labor agreement changes for one meeting before the agreement appears on the next meeting’s agenda for adoption. As such, there is a first review of some changes to the City’s agreement with Newport Beach Firefighters on this agenda.
  • We’ve been working for a long time on a project that would enhance some public safety (think Police and Fire) communications bandwidth in busy areas, like the Peninsula, and also to help us stay compliant with the rapidly changing needs, demands and technology of cellular service.  A proposed agreement with Verizon would lay out how we’ll work with them for a public safety system primarily. But, it also makes it more streamlined for Verizon to seek permits for other coverage areas like Newport Coast, Spyglass, and the Peninsula. This concept – having a master agreement template where sites are added (and removed) from Verizon’s inventory – is one that still involves public notifications and input regarding cell sites for non-safety customers like you and me.
  • Our hard-working and creative Harbor Commission makes its annual trek to the Council to make sure that the Commission’s goals for 2018 are aligned with the wishes of the City Council.
  • The long saga of adjusting certain rental rates in Newport Harbor comes to a public hearing for just fuel docks, following some appraisal work.  

A few notes:

  • We’re into our Fourth (today) and Fifth (Friday, March 9) “Friday Forums” on John Wayne Airport (JWA) issues. Given that you’ve probably missed the one today if you’re reading this now, our next one will be co-hosted by the County of Orange again and will cover the very interesting (really!) subject of how the Airport allocates air carrier slots via the Access Plan at JWA. 
  • Still speaking about airports, the Aviation Committee’s next meeting is Monday, February 12 at 4 p.m. in the Civic Center Community Room. 
  • Some breaking news about the Corona del Mar Fire Station and Library – at long last!  Our Public Works staff is excited to announce that we recently opened bids for the new Cdm Fire Station and Library replacement project. We received great interest from construction companies, with 16 closely spaced bids. The lowest bid came in from Telacu Construction, based out of Orange, and the proposed bid cost was a bit less than we had feared going in, given the state of the economy (in a good economy, labor and materials costs can spike). Public Works is preparing to bring the bids to the City Council very soon. If approved, we could see construction activity before May (yes, 2018, smarties).   
  • In the meantime, we need to set up a Temporary Fire Station #5. We’ll be at the OASIS Auxiliary parking lot (NW corner of Marguerite and 5th). So starting this Sunday, that lot will be temporarily closed as we start mobilizing. The parking lot will reopen on Tuesday the 13 and the western part of the lot (close to the grass) will be used as the new temporary station.  The remaining 2/3 of the parking lot will be open and available for OASIS and other public use after Tuesday. The temporary station will house five staff members, one Engine and one Ambulance, plus gear) in modular living quarters.  The temporary station is expected to be fully relocated and operational in mid-March. For my OASIS and Jasmine Creek friends, your Station #5 team will be with you for quite a while – I know you will find them to be good neighbors and nice folks who will respect the quiet of the neighborhood. 

Thank you for reading. Please forward this Guide to family, friends and members of your HOA if you represent one. I always like hearing from you, too, so please don’t hesitate to ask a question or offer a comment.    

Dave Kiff
City Manager


City Council Meeting Information

The Newport Beach City Council meets on the second and fourth Tuesdays of most months (the exceptions are August and December). Typically, there is a Study Session that starts at 4 p.m. Study sessions are times for the Council to take a deeper look at a specific issue, or hear a presentation, that might eventually lead to a specific and more formal action. A closed session often follows the Study Session. Closed sessions are typically to address legal, personnel, and other matters where additional confidentiality is important. The Regular (evening) Session typically starts at 7 p.m., and often has a specific listing of 20-40 different items ready for formal votes. Items on the “Consent Calendar” are heard all at once, unless a Council member has removed (aka “pulled”) an item from the Consent Calendar for specific discussion and separate vote. If an item on the agenda is recommended to be “continued”, it means that the item won’t be heard nor voted on that evening, but will be pushed forward to another noticed meeting.    

Public Comment is welcomed at both the Study Session and the Regular Session. The public can comment on any item on the agenda. If you want to comment on a Consent Calendar item that was not pulled from the Consent Calendar by a Council Member, you will want to do so at the time listed on the agenda – right before the Council votes on the entire Consent Calendar (it’s Roman Numeral XIII on the posted agenda). If an item is pulled, the Mayor will offer that members of the public can comment as that specific item is heard separately. Additionally, there is a specific section of Public Comment for items not on the agenda, but on a subject of some relationship to the city government. If you cannot attend a meeting and/or want to communicate with the City Council directly, this e-mail gets to all of them: Please know that I get a copy of that e-mail, too, because in almost all cases it’s something that the City Manager follows-up on. It’s my head-start.   

The Council meets in the Council Chambers at 100 Civic Center Drive, off of Avocado between San Miguel and East Coast Highway. There is plenty of parking in the parking structure behind City Hall. You are always welcome to attend in person, but you can also watch on TV Time Warner/Spectrum 30 and Cox Channel 852 or stream it on your computer.

This Insider’s Guide is not an attempt to summarize every item on the Agenda – just the ones that seem of specific interest to Dave. I encourage you to read the full agenda if you wish.

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