Insider's Guide

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

January 20, 2018

A good Saturday to you. Here is what’s up for the next City Council meeting (set for Tuesday, January 23) 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. You can view the full agenda and staff reports on the City's website.

Study Session is at 5 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 of this page.

There is only one item on Study Session (again, starting at 5 p.m.), and that’s the Balboa Peninsula Trolley. This is chance for the Council to hear more about how the Trolley did in Summer 2017, and to talk about whether it should continue in Summer 2018 and/or whether some changes should be made to routes or days. Remember that last year it ran on Saturdays and Sundays, with July 4 and Labor Day added in. If you have a thought about the Trolley program either way, I know that the Council and staff would appreciate your opinions.

The Regular Session at 7 p.m. doesn’t have a lot of items on it. But it does have the item I wrote about two weeks ago regarding Lido Marina Village (LMV) and a parking management plan. This was delayed because one of the principals from LMV had his home impacted in the Montecito mudslides. The item itself is an appeal of the Planning Commission’s decision to adopt the City staff-recommended parking management plan for LMV. This is a public hearing, so public comments are very much welcomed. At the conclusion of the hearing, the City Council will determine the merits of the appeal, and then can decide to reject, modify or accept the parking management plan.

A few notes:

  • On Friday, January 26 at 3 p.m. in the City Council Chambers, we’ll have our third “Friday Forum” on John Wayne Airport (JWA) issues. This forum will be co-hosted by the County of Orange, and the subject is “Noise 101” – basically how the JWA Access and Noise Office does its work. Please join us if you can. There will be at least two more Forums (planned for February 9 and March 9) where County staff will co-present.
  • Speaking of JWA, be on the lookout for a special email from me that summarizes lots of recent activity about the airport. I wanted to include it here, but I’m not quite done with it yet. One of the hopeful things I’ll write about is the Boeing 737-MAX. We learned recently that the MAX had one of its first flights out of JWA (in late December - a Southwest flight to Phoenix). The noise readings were very promising, compared with a similarly-weighted Boeing 737-700 that Southwest uses more typically. The Boeing 737-MAX and the Airbus 320neo are billed as being quieter and less emitting, and we seem to be able to anecdotally confirm the former. It will take a while for these planes to enter the fleets, and there is no promise that many will be at JWA (yet!). Boeing has done some MAX videos – yes, they are promotional videos, so take them with a grain of salt. The video of ridiculous takeoffs and turns (but know that this is not how it flies with passengers) and a video about the MAX and noise.
  • Consider coming to the City Council’s annual planning/goal setting session on Monday evening, January 29 2018 at Marina Park, starting at 5:30 p.m. I can talk more now about the subjects on that agenda – one is whether to (and when to) start a General Plan Update. For all of you folks interested in that issue, this would be a good meeting to attend. We’ll also spend some time on fiscal issues, the harbor (this is the Year of the Harbor, after all), and more. And cookies.
  • One bit of quirkiness for you. If you come by City Hall and the Civic Green now, you might see something odd – a robotic, electric lawn mower. This actually isn’t quirky to customers here – the gas-powered lawn mower noise was pretty loud before. So now, a nice US-made “Roomba for Lawns” is out there plodding along as quiet as can be. Mayor Duffield actually brought this up to us, wondering why we were mowing lawns the old noisy and smelly way. So in comes this little guy. Sometime soon they will make a robotic City Manager, one that also roams about, turns or backs up when he runs into walls, goes smoothly up and down problematic hills, and basically gets the job done with little fuss (except leaving clumpy grass cuttings) and no snark in his e-mails nor an astronomically-priced pension benefit.

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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