Newport Beach City Manager Update: Fire and Lifeguard Appreciation Dinner, General Plan Advisory Committee

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Grace Leung

By Grace Leung, Newport Beach City Manager

Congratulations to all those from the Newport Beach Fire Department who were recognized at the 24th Annual Fire & Lifeguard Appreciation Dinner on Tuesday, September 20:

  • Letters of commendations were awarded to lifeguards Jason Aigner and Carly Christian.
  • Awards of merit went to Fire Engineer Erin Brown, Firefighter-paramedic Chad Duncan and Firefighter Jude Olivas.Life saving awards were given to Fire Captain Jim Boland, Firefighter-paramedic Geoff Cathey, Fire Engineer Peter Garcia, Firefighter-paramedic Jeremiah Martin, and Firefighter-paramedic Aaron Reed.
  • Medal of Valor awards were presented to Lifeguard Andrew Belden, Fire Engineer Mark Garman, Lifeguard Captain Andy Hayes, Fire Engineer Travis Shook, and Fire Captain Jimmy Strack.
  • Foster Hoose was awarded the 2022 Seasonal Lifeguard of the Year. Foster has served the City as a seasonal lifeguard since 2016, and is now working as a deckhand on the Fire Department’s sea watch rescue boats.
  • 2022 Civilian of the Year honors went to Ralph Gerardo, fire facilities coordinator. Ralph, who has served as an Orange County Fire Authority reserve firefighter, has been with the City of Newport Beach for more than 7 years.
  • Jon Mitchell was named the 2022 Lifeguard Supervisor of the Year. Jon joined the Fire Department in 1987 as a tower lifeguard and rose through the ranks to become a lifeguard captain in 2006.
  • Our 2022 Firefighter of the Year is Chad Spiker. Chad is a 17-year veteran of the Newport Beach Fire Department, and has spent the past 9 years as a fire captain. Chad is described by his colleagues as a “selfless leader” who “demonstrates daily his commitment to improving the department.

Please join me in congratulating the award winners and thanking all of our firefighters and lifeguards for their service to our residents and visitors.

Residents Invited to Apply for General Plan Advisory Committee Through Sept. 28

The City is inviting residents to apply for the General Plan Advisory Committee, or GPAC, to participate in a comprehensive update of the City’s General Plan. All California cities are required to develop general plans to serve as blueprints for the future, outlining policy goals and objectives to guide and shape development. The last comprehensive update to Newport Beach’s General Plan was in 2006.

The advisory committee members will be tasked with helping ensure community input, reviewing and guiding changes to the General Plan goals and policies, and making recommendations to the General Plan Steering Committee, a smaller group that will oversee the GPAC and report directly to the City Council.

The GPAC will meet as necessary on weeknights or weekdays, Monday through Thursday, at a time to be set by the committee. Meetings will be held at the Civic Center, 100 Civic Center Drive.

For more information and applications visit or contact the City Clerk’s Office at (949) 644-3005. The application deadline is Wednesday, September 28 at noon.

Community Meeting on Snowy Plover Management Sept. 26 at Marina Park

Residents are invited to attend a community meeting on the City’s Snowy Plover Management Plan at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, September 26 at Marina Park, 1600 Balboa Blvd.

The Western Snowy Plover is a small shorebird found along the Pacific Coast. Plovers are listed as a “threatened” species, federally protected under the Endangered Species Act. A population of plovers lives on the Balboa Peninsula for most of the year.

In 2009 the City initiated a management plan for the area that included monitoring the critical Plover habitat area and installing fencing. In July 2022, the City submitted an updated draft of the Western Snowy Plover Management Plan to the California Coastal Commission. The draft is available here:

For more information, please contact Senior Planner Chelsea Crager at [email protected] or (949) 644-3227.

Civic Center Dog Park to Close Oct. 3 for 6-Week Refurbishment

The Civic Center Dog Park will close for several weeks beginning Monday, Oct. 3 for a refurbishment project. The City will install new shade structures and fence screening, replace synthetic turf and water fountains, repair uplifted sidewalk panels and other incidental items.

The Dog Park will be closed for the duration of the project and is anticipated to reopen in mid-November.

For questions or concerns, please contact the City’s Public Works Department at [email protected] or (949) 644-3311.

County to Begin Annual Flood Control Maintenance at Santa Ana River Outlet

Orange County Public Works crews, in coordination with the City of Newport Beach, will be at the Santa Ana River outlet to perform annual flood control maintenance from September 26 through late November.


County crews will remove approximately 70,000 cubic yards of accumulated sand from the channel outlet between Pacific Coast Highway and the shoreline. Removing excess sand minimizes potential flood risks during rain events and maintains natural tidal flow with the adjacent Newport Shores marsh area.

After any debris is removed, the sand will be used to replenish the beach areas between 52nd Street and 40th Street, where the extra sand will be most beneficial. For more details please visit

August Treasury Report Now Available

The August 2022 Treasury Report is available on the City’s website at

As of August, the City’s investment portfolio totaled $352.3 million when measured at amortized cost. The current market value of the City’s portfolio of $342.2 million incorporates price fluctuations due to the changing interest rate environment that are typically irrelevant, since the City typically holds its securities to maturity and receives the full principal value at that time.

The City’s Liquidity Portfolio is sized to meet the City’s cash flow needs over the next 12 months. Approximately $47.6 million or 14 percent of the portfolio was invested in liquid investments available for day-to-day operating expenses and the costs associated with ongoing construction projects. An additional $14.9 million or 4 percent of the overall portfolio was invested in a portfolio of securities with targeted short-term maturities, which earns a higher yield than the City’s more liquid investments.

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team operates in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, 7 days a week to respond to mental and behavioral health crises. The mobile unit is staffed with mental health specialists and EMTs, and works closely with the City’s police and fire departments.

This week the Be Well team:

  • Engaged with the community at the Newport Beach Police Department’s Mobile Café at Newport Pier.
  • Transported one person to a crisis stabilization unit for treatment.
  • Transported two people to the Be Well sobering station for treatment.
  • Transported four people to services, shelter intakes, and appointments.
  • Filed an Adult Protective Services report for an older adult experiencing dementia.

Homelessness Update

The City of Newport Beach provides a comprehensive response to address homelessness through a coordinated effort by City staff, contractors, partner agencies, and nonprofit groups.

This week, the City’s homeless outreach and response teams:

  • Continue to shelter people. Nineteen people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter.
  • Attended a housing meeting with a client at the Casa Paloma Apartments in Midway City. Casa Paloma’s 48 units of permanent supportive housing focuses on people who are high-frequency users of the healthcare system.

To donate to those experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach, please visit our Good Giving Program web page at

Click here to view the latest homeless dashboard, which includes key monthly and yearly data on the City’s homeless response:


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