With the general plan update slowly underway, the community is starting to get involved.
Newport Beach City Council got the ball rolling Nov. 14 on the General Plan update, but slowed the roll down to a crawl in an effort to be transparent, engage and inform the community, and take their time considering a potential update.
The General Plan provides the policy basis for all land-use and zoning regulations, details how circulation and traffic will (or won’t) work, lays out development guidelines, and more. The last update was in 2006.
After city staff presented the potential process during the study session, the general consensus on the dais was to slow it down. They supported the idea of establishing a “blue ribbon” committee to review the existing plan and circle back in a year or two with suggestions for the Council on what — if anything other than the absolutely necessary — elements of the General Plan should be updated.
The local community group, Stop Polluting Our Newport, also known as Still Protecting Our Newport or SPON, views this general plan update as “an excellent opportunity to bring residents and other stakeholders together to identify the issues that have arisen since the last GPU and to explore ways to resolve them.”
As part of its mission for public education and advocacySPON has created its own General Plan Advisory Committee “open to all those committed to preserving the residential and environmental qualities of Newport Beach.”
Nearly 40 residents attended the first SPON GPAC meeting on Nov. 18.
“Participants shared concerns about current trends negatively impacting their quality of life,” SPON officials wrote in a press release. “A group discussion focused on ways to address these trends in the short and medium terms, through citizen action, and over the long term, through the GPU process.”
The group aims to educate residents and stakeholders about the importance of “good land use policies and proper policy implementation.”
The committee plans will meet again on Saturday and then regularly throughout 2018 to encourage maximum participation by informed citizens.
For more information, visit spon-newportbeach.org/general-plan-update and newportbeachca.gov/government/departments/community-development/planning-division/general-plan-codes-and-regulations/general-plan