By Grace Leung, Newport Beach City Manager
The next City Council meeting is Tuesday, June 13. Items of interest are highlighted below. The entire agenda and reports can be viewed here: https://www.newportbeachca.gov/Home/Components/Calendar/Event/71688/72.
A study session will begin at 4 p.m. Agenda items include:
- The County of Orange Public Works Department will provide an overview of planned improvements to the Santa Ana-Delhi Flood Control Channel, which will provide enhanced flood protection and habitat mitigation along with trail improvements.
- Staff from the Community Development Department will present an overview of the City-owned Balboa Yacht Basin, which includes a marina, storage garages, a restaurant, commercial retail and offices, and several residential apartments. The presentation will focus on the condition of the aging buildings and potential redevelopment opportunities.
The regular meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. Agenda items include:
- Community programs and special events grant recommendations for Fiscal Year 2023-24. The Council will consider staff recommendations to award grants to qualified community groups, community and charitable events, and large signature events.
- Establishment of a new Special Flood Hazard (VE) Overlay District. The VE Overlay District would modify design standards for new residential developments in the VE Special Flood Hazard Area (VE Zone) as determined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). New development in the VE Zone is required to meet FEMA construction design criteria. Due to the complexity of complying with FEMA criteria and the City’s current design standards, the proposed ordinance would provide property owners with more flexibility in designing their homes.
- Adoption of the Fiscal Year 2023-24 City operating budget and Capital Improvement Program (CIP) budget. The annual budget serves as the foundation for financial planning and control and allows the City Council to prioritize expenditures in alignment with community values. The proposed budget includes:
- $410.7 million in operational spending and $29.4 million in capital improvement projects, for a total of $440.1 million.
- A stable local revenue base with projected fiscal year 2023-24 property tax revenues growing at an estimated 3.4%.
- A healthy level of reserves that includes a General Fund contingency reserve of $62 million – an amount equal to 25% of the City’s General Fund operating budget.
- Continuation of an aggressive pension payment plan which, based on current projections, will see the City’s unfunded pension liability eliminated in less than 10 years.
- 765 full-time positions, an increase of 24 full-time positions from the prior year, 14 of which are conversions of existing part-time positions to full-time positions. Part-time positions would decrease by a total of 11.78 full-time equivalent positions.
- Recommendations from the City’s Homeless Ad Hoc Committee. In March, the Council reestablished the Homeless Ad Hoc Committee to evaluate contract services under the City’s homeless outreach program. The Committee has prepared a list of recommendations for the City Council’s review and discussion, which include proposed policy changes and a community education initiative.
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 6 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: [email protected]. The City Manager also gets 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 Dr., 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.