Saturday, June 02, 2012

Righeimer's Charter And More Tuesday Night

CHARTER BACK ON THE AGENDA
As most readers here already know, the Costa Mesa City Council will hold the first of the required Public Hearings on Jim Righeimer's Charter at its meeting Tuesday, June 5th.  This will be only one of several important issues discussed, but likely THE MOST IMPORTANT of them all.  You can read the agenda HERE.
NO CLOSED SESSION TUESDAY
Based on the announcement of the meeting, there will be NO closed session Tuesday night (unless they change their collective minds), so the meeting will begin at 6:00 and end who-knows-when?  The last meeting ran until 3:00 a.m. the next day!
INTERESTING CHARGES ON THE WARRANTS
As always, the Consent Calendar provides some interesting information and this time is no exception.  There are three (3) Warrants for the council to consider.  Among the bits of information to be gleaned are the following charges:

  • Liebert Cassidy Whitmore - $13,710.00 for Labor Negotiations. (I'm guessing this is for the services of Richard Kreisler)
  • Newport Helicopter Service - $13,510.00 for the removal of equipment and preparation of helicopters for sale
  • Woodruff Spradlin & Smart - $52.50 for charges regarding Benito Acosta vs. City.  (This just never goes away!)
  • Management Partners - $6,200.00 for Interim Management Assistance
  • City of Huntington Beach - $51,800.00 for Helicopter services for February and March
  • CTS Language Link - $7553.60 for Special Election Notice Translation (I guess this is for that aborted special election they fouled up)
  • Filarsky and Watt, LLP - $2260.75 for Legal Services from March 3rd through Appril 25th.
  • Mobile Concepts Technology - $14,625.00 for Computer Tablets and Protection Agreements
  • Thomas J. Brodermann, PhD - $2170.58 for what appears to be three training modules entitled Manage Stress in the Workplace (5/1/12); Importance of Humor (5/2/12) and Tactical Communication (5/3/12).  I'm sorry, but I just couldn't help but chuckle as I read those titles considering the circumstances in City Hall these days.  It's not clear if these were training sessions, books or cartoons, like that Goofy cartoon you see in traffic school.
SIX HUNDRED GRAND FOR GENERAL PLAN UPDATE?
Item #6 on the Consent Calendar is a charge of $664,705 from Hogle-Ireland in Pasadena for General Plan Update and Environmental Impact Report.  Yikes!  I hope somebody pulls this item for discussion so we can get a little more information about how we spent more than a half-million dollars on this project.  You can read about it HERE.


GENERAL ELECTION
Item #12 deals with the upcoming November 6, 2012 General Election.

BIA RE-AUTHORIZATION
Under Public Hearings, we have #1, the re-authorization of the additional 3% TOT for the Business Improvement Association.  The staff report is HERE.


BONDS?
Number 2 is for Bonds for the "Tower on 19th Street", currently known as Bethel Towers.  According to the staff report, HERE, these bonds will not exceed $37 million, which will be used to  finance the acquisition and rehabilitation of the building.  Theoretically, the facility will remain "affordable" housing.  I guess I'd like to hear more about this and I'm sure the seniors presently living there sure will.


  CHARTER
Number 3 is the now-infamous Jim Righeimer Charter.  I expect we may see a few people stand to address this one.  It's going to be interesting to see if anything has changed in their pitch for this ill-advised attempt to takeover Costa Mesa government by a few political opportunists.  You can read the staff report HERE, which also includes nine (9) links to other helpful pieces of information.


FINALLY, APPOINTMENTS!
Under Old Business we will FINALLY get to the appointments of volunteers to various city committees.  You will recall that this council apparently decided that the three dozen folks who applied for seats last fall were not adequate, so they pushed the process off until the spring.  Now we have a MUCH smaller contingent from which to select and they are just now getting around to it.  The staff report his HERE.


WHAT ABOUT FITZPATRICK'S SEAT? (so to speak)
It is of interest to note that there is NO item set for discussion of how to replace resigned commissioner Jim Fitzpatrick on the Planning Commission.  This item requires public awareness and transparency, even though those of us who watch this council in action have ABSOLUTELY no doubt that they've already figured out what they're going to do.  This is going to be VERY interesting because some of their favorite players - like Ethan Temianka and Jeff Mathews from the Parks and Recreation Commission - are already making noises like they will run for seats on one of the special district boards - the Sanitary District or the Mesa Consolidated Water District.  If so, they could find themselves in exactly the same position Fitzpatrick was in by holding a seat on the Planning Commission, too.  Regardless, Fitzpatrick's term expires January 31, 2015, so it is not likely, nor prudent, for the council to permit his seat to remain vacant all that time.  This is going to be very interesting.  This issue SHOULD have been on the agenda for THIS council meeting.



ANOTHER LONG ONE?  WILL BEVER SHOW UP?
All in all it looks like yet another interesting - and possibly long - council meeting.  We find ourselves wondering if Mayor Eric Bever will grace us with his presence for this one.  He's ducked a couple more meetings recently, so placing the crown on his head didn't guarantee he'd participate.  You will recall that he "didn't sign up for this"... one of his many infamous comments from the dais.

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10 Comments:

Anonymous sherryk1 said...

I expect to see the Liebert Cassidy bill continuing and increasing. I’m sure Liebert Cassidy will be, or already is, involved in the personnel issue regarding Julie. The announcement and handling of that investigation was not good. I have never seen an employee placed on administrative leave that quickly and announced in that fashion. I got the feeling it came as an order from council members upset over their charter delay. I will be surprised if there isn’t a lawsuit over the incident. I don’t want to see the City, and ultimately the residents, burdened with a huge legal bill and possible settlement costs but I also think lessons have to be learned the hard way when administrators and elected officials act in haste and don’t listen.
I agree with Geoff, I hope someone pulls the item regarding the $600, expenditure for the General Plan Update. That amount seems extremely high.
Lastly, l hope everyone has listened and learned from the Fitzpatrick Sanitary and Planning Commission incompatibility issue and won’t allow that to happen again.

6/03/2012 08:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Concerned said...

I doubt the City Council will fill Fitzpatrick’s Planning Commission seat until they find out if he is ousted from the Sanitary District. If he is found incompatible, and I certainly hope he is, they will likely reappoint him to the Planning Commission. The unfab four need to keep lapdog Fitzy involved somewhere in the City so he can continue to push thru their agenda. It’s obvious Ethan Temianka and Jeff Mathews are weighing their options before they announce candidacy for Mesa Water or the San District. I’m sure there is some serious analysis underway to determine their best chance of winning. Once they get elected, then the systematic takeover of these successful special districts will handled from the inside. This despicable City Council needs access to the money sitting in reserves of these two agencies and will stop at nothing to get it.

It is no surprise that internal plant Jim Fitzpatrick has not let go of the trash contract out for bid situation. It is pathetic how he keeps calling in favors from his media buddies like Joe Serna every time he wants to blather on with falsehoods. He is just trying to keep this issue in the forefront of everyone’s mind to plant seeds of doubt in Perry and Ferryman’s credibility before the election. Do not be fooled voters. This campaign is another well planned scheme, not fact. There is no corruption, no back door deals, absolutely nothing that indicates any fiscal mismanagement at the Sanitary District like Jim Fitzpatrick has alleged over the last 18 months. Do not trust these guys or anyone associated with them. As we have witnessed, they are big trouble. If more fools get elected to these seats, our City is totally screwed.

6/03/2012 12:21:00 PM  
Anonymous Fan of the CMSD said...

Here you go rate payers...looks like the CMSD board voted to reduce your trash rates in spite of what Jim Fitzpatrick says about them. Didn't he allude to the fact that they were NOT working on your behalf. Guess he was wrong.

Scott Carroll, General Manager of the Costa Mesa Sanitary District sent out the following press release the other day:

CMSD BOARD TENTATIVELY APPROVES REDUCING TRASH RATE
(Costa Mesa, CA) – At their May 24th regular meeting, the Costa Mesa Sanitary District Board of Directors directed staff to set the trash rate for fiscal year 2012-13 at $19.00 a month. Residents residing in Costa Mesa and small portions of Newport Beach and the unincorporated county are currently paying $19.95 a month. District staff recommended temporarily lowering the rate by using some of the District’s unreserved fund balance. Because the District has no capital expenses in solid waste such as collection trucks, trash bins, or recycling facilities, the Board believes it was prudent to begin giving some of the money back to the ratepayers. The Board will analyze the unreserved fund balance every year to determine if the lowered rates can continue while at the same time the District will look at using these funds to expand existing solid waste programs. The Board will consider officially adopting the new rate after a public hearing that is scheduled for June 28th. The new rates will go into effect on July 1, 2012.

6/03/2012 03:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Heart for Costa Mesa said...

A friend of mine sat through San District hearings, did a little research and used her common sense to come up with this letter she sent to the Sanitary Board. Name withheld by request.

Dear Board of Costa Mesa Sanitary District;
Prior to CMSD giving legal notice to CR&R to exercise the sunset of the Evergreen clause, it would be prudent to perform due diligence and obtain written prospective bids from all known competitors for the same or similar products and services for the identical time frame with the understanding that the contract could not begin for 6 years into the future. After reviewing all of the prospective bids the board would be able to make a reasonable and realistic decision based upon actual facts rather than unsubstantiated speculation. Any reasonable person would perform the same due diligence when making any major purchase or entering into any significant long term contractual agreement. It could happen that soliciting bids after the ending of the CR&R contract sunset period in 6 years, that the new bids might cost more and deliver fewer services and benefits than the rejected CR&R contract. Six years of inflation, changes in labor and fuel costs as well as the falling purchasing power of the dollar potentially could have a very negative impact on the bids. Furthermore, CR&R is under no obligation to submit any future contract bids at the $19.95 residential ratepayer rate. I hate to see a decision made in haste which could potentially put CMSD in a worse position than the present contract. Unless you can guarantee the ratepayers a better deal, keep the CR&R contract.
Respectfully,
xxxxxx

my 2cents: We are not hearing the whole truth from Fitzy but a version all his own, trying to mimic his mentors and cultivate belief in a false crisis and outrage over skewed information just like some councilmen we know.

6/03/2012 11:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Thank you said...

Absolutely Heart for Costa Mesa! You hit the nail on the head. This contract situation is yet another made up controversy. Smoke and mirrors my friends, smoke and mirrors. While Fitzy is calling the Daily Pilot and going on TV whining about personal vendettas and the good ole boys trying to oust him, pay attention to what’s really going on behind the curtain. In reality, Fitzy and his Council buddies are working on back door deals all over the place. These idiots created a fake catastrophe at City Hall and have created another calamity at the San District. I’m sure by the time the election rolls around, we will hear rumblings about everything wrong at Mesa Water too. Do not put an X by Ethan Temianka and/or Jeff Mathews or we will become the next City of Bell for sure.

On a happier note, the Fish Fry was totally awesome this year! What a great Costa Mesa event. As I walked around I listened to all the laughter, witnessed generations of families, saw and felt tremendous pride in our beautiful city, I was saddened to think of what may come if the Charter passes and a bunch of jerks win these various seats. Please get out there and tell all of your friends to vote in November.

6/04/2012 12:49:00 AM  
Anonymous Terry Koken said...

Hey, Geoff--

The staff report for the charter has gone missing. It gives back a "404 Not found". Any ideas?

6/04/2012 09:34:00 AM  
Blogger The Pot Stirrer said...

Just checked... it's there.

6/04/2012 09:38:00 AM  
Anonymous 9 month year said...

water and san are doing a much better job than skool district. we need to concentrate on changing the board there. yet, not a peep about it.

6/04/2012 12:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

9 month year... We need people with a passion for education for the Costa Mesa seats and we need to find friends for the Newport Beach seats who will look at the needs of the whole district! It's a way down the road but this year Mesa Verde Community Inc. will sponsor a school board candidate's forum for the first time - maybe we'll get a lively debate and find some new talent.

6/04/2012 10:57:00 PM  
Anonymous 9 month year said...

Robin, glad to hear of the debate. We need a change in the Mesa Verde area seat ASAP.

6/05/2012 06:49:00 AM  

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