Insider's Guide

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

March 8, 2019


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Happy Friday, I hope you are enjoying the break from the winter rainstorms, however brief this one will be!  Our next City Council meeting is Tuesday, March 12.  The following are items that may be of interest.  As always, this is not a summary of the entire agenda, which can be viewed here.

 Study Session begins at 5 p.m. with three informative items:

  • The Board of Library Trustee will present a detailed proposal for a Central Library Lecture Hall.  A preferred site, funding and proposed next steps will be discussed for community and City Council input and direction. 
  • Staff will present the Capital Improvement Program (CIP) Early Look of proposed new projects and additional funding for existing projects for the FY 2019/20 Budget.  The final recommended projects will be included as part of the City Manager’s recommended budget that will be submitted to City Council in mid-April.
  • With changes to the flood zone map, as required by FEMA, going into effect this month, changes will be required to the City’s development standards in the mapped flood zones.  Staff will discuss the changes and request input from City Council.

The Regular Session begins at 7 p.m. and the following are items of note on the consent calendar:   

  • An amendment to the contract for citywide tree maintenance services with Great Scott Tree Service is recommended to: 1) enhance service level – setting the grid tree pruning cycle from a range of two to three years to a complete two year cycle, 2) establish a contingency to address as-needed storm response services, and 3) move the contract cycle to align with the City’s fiscal year.  It is important to note that there is no change in billing rates, which were obtained through a competitive procurement process.
  • The Grand Canal Dredging Project – Phase 2 is underway and following a pre-dredge survey, there was much less material to dredge than previously anticipated.  As a result, the dredging work is complete at lower cost than budgeted and sooner than expected.  Due to this circumstance, staff is requesting Council approval to perform additional dredging maintenance in the Grand Canal.  Additionally, dredging is needed within a private commercial marina at 2241 West Coast Highway as a result of the recent heavy rains coupled with the failure of a City storm drain pipe.  Staff proposes available funds from this project for this dredging work.
  • The City Council expanded the membership of the General Plan Update Steering Committee from five to seven resident members.  Applications for the two additional positions were reviewed and Mayor Dixon is recommending that James Carlson and Catherine O’Hara be appointed to the Steering Committee.

Items of note for Public Hearing and Current Business include:

  • The applicant and appellant have requested the appeal of the Harbor Commission’s approval of the Newport Marina reconstruction and reconfiguration be continued to March 26, 2019

  • Staff will be conducting a comprehensive water rate study to ensure we have a rate structure that supports the City’s water service operations and system infrastructure needs.  The last rate study was conducted in 2009.  Following a competitive RFP process, staff is recommending Raftelis Financial Consultants conduct the study.
  • City Council and staff are actively looking for ways to address the issue of homelessness, an increasing concern for Newport Beach as well as the other cities in the County.  In 2018, we engaged City Net, a nonprofit homeless services organization, in a six-month pilot program for outreach services.  During the pilot period, City Net made 158 contacts, of those 51 individuals agreed to enter into case management services with City Net.  There were 17 actual street exits of homeless individuals during the pilot program.  Based on these results, staff is recommending a three-year agreement with City Net that adds in on call services outside of normal business hours in addition to engagement, outreach and case management services.
  • The County of Orange is considering modernizing the general aviation facilities at John Wayne Airport and has released a draft EIR for the project.  After reviewing the draft EIR, staff and consultants believe the project will increase the number of corporate and private jets that depart JWA, resulting in potentially negative impacts on communities surrounding the airport.  Project Alternative 3 appears to be the least impactful on Newport Beach neighborhoods, pending further environmental review.  Therefore, staff is recommending the Mayor send a letter to the County requesting the supervisors adopt Alternative 3.

As a reminder, public comment is welcome at the City Council meeting.  The public can comment on any item on the agenda.  If you cannot attend the meeting and/or want to communicate with the City Council directly on an item, the following e-mail address gets to all of them: City Council

The Week in Review is provided this weekIn case you miss it, we do post them on the City’s website; the latest edition can be found here

Thank you for reading.  Feedback is appreciated so please don’t hesitate to ask a question or offer a comment. 

Grace K. Leung
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 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: The City Manager also get's a copy of the email, because in almost all cases it’s something that the City Manager follows-up on.  

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. You are always welcome to attend in person, but you can also watch on TV, Spectrum channel 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 the City Manager. You are encouraged to read the full agenda if you wish.

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