Newport Beach City Manager Update: Homelessness Update, Council Agenda

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Grace Leung

By Grace Leung, Newport Beach City Manager

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.

Our efforts include periodic educational workshops and seminars for residents to learn more about how we are addressing homelessness through these strategic partnerships.

In 2022 we introduced the Homeless Services Community Forum Series with presentations from City Net, our contract social service provider, Share our Selves, a local nonprofit that provides outreach, medical, and social services, and Be Well OC, which provides mobile mental health crisis service for all Newport Beach residents, housed and unhoused. You can view the City Net and Be Well forums on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@newportbeachgov.

The first forum in our 2023 series will be on Thursday, Feb. 16 at 6 p.m. in the Civic Center Community Room, 100 Civic Center Dr., featuring PATH (People Assisting The Homeless). The City of Newport Beach collaborates with PATH, a Placentia-based nonprofit, to locate housing for homeless individuals and help newly sheltered people remain in their homes.

PATH Orange County Regional Director Melanie McQueen will discuss how the organization provides a wide range of services such as shelter and housing assistance, health care, job resources and ongoing case management.

The next forum in the series will be on Thursday, April 20 at 6 p.m., also in the Civic Center Community Room, featuring the Orange County Office of Care Coordination. Representatives will discuss how the County works with cities and community-based organizations to expand shelter capacity, integrate services, and coordinate public and private resources to meet the needs of the homeless population in Orange County.

Please join us to learn more about the City’s ongoing efforts to address homelessness. You can also view our latest homeless data dashboard, which includes key monthly and yearly data on the Newport Beach’s homeless response: https://www.newportbeachca.gov/trending/community-issues/homelessness/monthly-homeless-count.

OCTA Seeking Feedback on Draft Long Range Transportation Plan

The Orange County Transportation Authority is seeking public feedback on its Draft Long Range Transportation Plan. The plan is developed every four years and aims to address future mobility needs in Orange County. Learn more at www.LRTP-StoryMap.com.

How to comment:

Take an online survey by Monday, February 6 at https://sur-vey.typeform.com/LRTP-survey.

Attend a public webinar on Tuesday, January 24 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Register at https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_XMHqGP2ST6GBvEeL-aVBpw.

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team operates in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, seven 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:

  • Responded to a domestic disturbance with an older adult. The team safely calmed the person and provided mental health referrals to the family.
  • Transported a person to the Yale Navigation Center for shelter and housing navigation services.
  • Transported a person to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter for an intake appointment.
  • Transported five people to services, shelter intakes, and appointments.

Homelessness Update

The City is addressing community concerns related to areas of increased homeless activity, including the Newport Transportation Center.

The City is working closely with property owner, The Irvine Company, and the tenant, the Orange County Transportation Authority. Depending on the location of people and tents, law enforcement jurisdiction varies from the Newport Beach Police Department, the Orange County Sheriff’s Department and the private Irvine Company security team.

However, regardless of where individuals are on or near the property, the City has been continually offering assistance such as outreach services, mental health services, and shelter, when beds are available, to those experiencing homelessness at the transportation center. Our contracted service providers, City Net and Be Well, along with the NBPD, monitor the area on a daily basis.

In addition, the City’s homeless outreach and response teams:

  • Housed an older adult who experienced homelessness for seven years. The Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter staff provided housing services to locate him a new apartment.
  • Continued to shelter people. Seventeen people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are now sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter.
  • Helped a person shelter at the Yale Navigation Center.
  • Enrolled a new client into services.

On the Agenda: City Council Meeting for Jan. 24

Our next City Council meeting is Tuesday, Jan. 24. Items of interest are highlighted below. The entire agenda and reports can be viewed here: https://www.newportbeachca.gov/Home/Components/Calendar/Event/71676/72.

A study session will begin at 4 p.m.:

  • City staff will present an overview of an inclusionary housing ordinance, which would set minimum requirements for affordable housing units within multi-unit residential development projects. The presentation will include potential requirements and items to consider when drafting an inclusionary housing ordinance.

The regular meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. Agenda items include:

  • A $158,000 construction contract to La Habra-based Diamond Construction and Design for improvements to the Goldenrod Pedestrian Bridge. The project will replace the bridge’s planters, irrigation and drainage system, wooden arches, improve lighting, and repair concrete.
  • Amendments to the Newport Beach Municipal Code that would update regulations on the construction of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units (JADUs). The amendments will bring the City into compliance with changes to California law that went into effect on January 1. The amendments also include recommendations by a Planning Commission Ad Hoc Committee to incentivize ADU production as directed by Council policy.
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