Council Meeting Agenda Preview
The Costa Mesa City Council meets again on Tuesday, November 5th in Council Chambers at City Hall beginning at 6:00. That meeting will be preceded by a closed session starting at 4:30 in the new location - the 5th floor bunker/conference room where shouting matches can only be overheard by the anointed few permitted on that floor at that time.
FROM THE TOP...
The open session promises to be another interesting - and long - one. Taking it from the top, here's what the agenda presents to us, HERE.
The agenda this time is a little confusing. It shows a "presentation" by Parks and Recreation Chairman Byron de Arakal right after the announcements and before Public Comments, but also shows what appears to be the same report at Item #10 on the Consent Calendar. More on that in due course.
CONSENT CALENDAR, BY THE NUMBERS
The Consent Calendar, once again, has a large number of items that, theoretically, could be voted upon in one vote without any item being pulled by a council member, staff member or member of the public. As is usually the case, I don't see that happening this time around.
THANKS FOR THE WARRANTS, STEVE
There are three (3) Warrants - lists of bills paid that we now see in some detail thanks to Mayor Pro Tem Steve Mensinger's insistence. You can read the text of the first one, Item #3, Warrant #2495, HERE.
MORE LEGAL COSTS
Item #4, Warrant #2496, HERE, has a few interesting entries. For example, we learn that we paid the law firm of Jones Day $46,530 for July and August and Liebert Cassidy Whitmore $6,000 for negotions of the CMCEA contract. We also paid Management Partners $6,092.60 for "Interim Mgt Svcs" - that is probably the charming Tammy Letourneau. We paid the law firm of Woodruff Spradlin and Smart $10.180.19 for work on the Benito Acosta appeal. Will that NEVER go away? And, one of the really big ticket items is the $250,936.01 we paid to the Costa Mesa Conference and Visitors Bureau. More on that group in a later post.
CHIP ESPINOSA EDITS...
Item, #5. Warrant #2497, HERE, shows a payment of $16.613.03 to Antje Morris for "Instructor Payment - fall 2013". Most of the other similar entries are for a couple hundred dollars, so that one jumped out at me. Also, we paid the City of Huntington Beach $16,625 for Helicopter Svs for August. And, tucked away in this warrant is also a payment to Chip Espinosa - he of the grand "Listening" program - of $1,750 for "3 Mtngs/3 Rpt Edits". I'm not worried about the money, but am curious about three meetings that resulted in three edits of his report.
Skipping along through some parcel maps we come to Item #10, the aforementioned Parks and Recreation Commission Goals Update, which will either be presented at this point in the agenda or earlier, as mentioned. You can read the report HERE. As you scroll down through that staff report there are a few items that may grab your attention. #2, dealing with the Fairview Park Master Plan and the assessment being made regarding passive and uses in the park got my attention. #6 will also be worth hearing about. Chairman de Arakal's presentation should make for interesting listening.
GISLER/GARFIELD BRIDGE STUFF
Item #11, HERE, deals with improvements of the Harbor Boulevard/Adams Avenue Intersection and I found it interesting because these improvements apparently being made to accommodate the Gisler/Garfield Bridge over the Santa Ana River.
RETIREMENT OF A HERO
Item #12 is the retirement/purchase of retiring Police Dog, Tornado. Read the staff report, HERE, and offer a quiet thanks to Tornado's service to the community.
Item #13, is an amendment to the Refund Policy, bringing it up to date with current circumstances. Read the staff report HERE.
UPDATING PUBLIC SAFETY EQUIPMENT
Item #14 is for the expenditure of more than $500,000 to replace Police and Fire Department Mobile Data Computers. The staff report is HERE.
FINALLY, TO PUBLIC HEARINGS!
And this brings us to the meat of the meeting, Public Hearings. I'm guessing it will be 9:00 p.m. or later by the time we get to this point in the agenda.
NEW CONSTRUCTION CODES
Public Hearing #1 is the 2013 Edition of the Model California Constructions Codes, requiring a resolution to adopt. I have no idea how long this will take. Read the staff report HERE.
ANNEXATION OF AN ISLAND
Public Hearing #2 is the proposal to commence annexation proceedings for an island of the county known as the Santa Ana/Colleen Island. Read the staff report HERE. I'm thinkin' we may see a few of the residents of that island present at the meeting to complain about the annexation. They would prefer to be annexed by Newport Beach. It might make for some interesting discussions.
REDEFINING SINGLE HOUSEKEEPING UNITS
Public Hearing #3 is the controversial Municipal Code amendment changing the definition of "single housekeeping unit" - a move designed to assist managing the proliferation of so-called "group homes" in Costa Mesa. Read the staff report HERE. I'm looking forward to the staff presentation and council discussion on this one.
ADIOS, HOOKAH PARLORS
Public Hearing #4 deals with two proposed ordinances, HERE, regarding Hookah Parlors, one of which is an urgency ordinance to shut them down due to public health concerns. This, also, will make for some interesting discussion.
At this point we are supposed to be at New Business #1, an Urban Master Plan Screening Request for a live/work development at 2075 Placentia Avenue, HERE.
New Business #2, which I refer to is the "shut down Sandy Genis" entry, is an amendment to the Municipal Code relating to appeal, rehearing and review procedures. You will recall that former mayor and current councilwoman Genis recently requested a re-hearing that was rejected by Mayor Jim Righeimer with the support of Mayor Pro Tem Steve Mensinger and councilman Gary Monahan. This one will be VERY interesting, particularly since it is in character of those men, who seem determined to quiet ALL criticism and opposing viewpoints. Read the staff report HERE.
EXCESSIVE USE OF RESOURCES
The final item on the agenda is New Business #3, the proposed "Excessive Use Of Resources" ordinance, HERE. This one is targeted directly at the above-mentioned group homes - rehab facilities that are popping up like mushrooms throughout our city. I won't be surprised if this item is heard well after midnight Tuesday/Wednesday morning. And, we all know what terrible decisions councils make after midnight, right? Anyhow, this one should also make for some interesting discussion.
GONNA BE A LONG NIGHT...
I plan to be there, scribbling notes so I can report the proceedings to you on Wednesday. Stay tuned...