BUCKLE UP NEWPORT BEACH VOTERS
2018 IS GOING TO BE QUITE A RIDE
Our city council election campaigns are in full gear. You’ll see candidates at many events and meetings throughout the city. They will be working hard to raise awareness of their candidacy and raise funds for a successful campaign. And if we are lucky, maybe just a few will even take to heart the concerns you have about our city’s future, finances and overall vision, all of which directly impact that character and charm of our town and its neighborhoods.
There are also be important development projects that we need to monitor. Koll Center Residences, a high-rise complex spanning across three towers in the Airport Area near Jamboree and Birch, will be coming back again for its Planning Commission Study Session redo. The initial study session was abruptly halted mid-meeting as several commissioners identified their financial conflicts of interest in this project.
Many of you drive by Shopoff’s Uptown Newport project, growing by leaps and bounds, in that very same Jamboree corridor. Residences, retail shops more are being jammed in between several high-rise commercial centers. And just a block or two away, our neighbors in Irvine keep building more and more high-density projects from our shared boundary line to its northernmost city limits.
You can count on more traffic clogging our arterial roads as these residential and commercial projects come on line.
There is talk of a Newport Beach General Plan Update, but none of our city leaders are anxious to tackle that in the midst of our election cycle. And why is that?
City Manager Transition
Meanwhile, we are all gearing up for an unexpected change in our city manager who is leaving at least six months ahead of his employment contract expiration. To say the circumstances surrounding his departure are “murky” is an understatement at the very least. We have an opportunity to provide input on what we think are important skills and attributes for someone who manages a roughly $300,000,000 operating budget each year. But given the lack of transparency that pervades our local government, it is unlikely our input will find its way into the transition process in any meaningful fashion.
Line in the Sand has been publicly quiet for the early part of this year for a variety of reasons, including using the time to study issues, development projects and candidates. But we won’t be quiet for the rest of the year. You can count on hearing from us on a regular basis on a variety of topics we feel are important for the long-term health of our home town.
Stay informed, visit our website, follow us on social media, and encourage your like-minded friends and neighbors to subscribe to our E-News updates. Your engagement in these issues is vitally important now and through the balance of this year. We thank you for your past support and willingness to talk about and tackle the big, important issues.
We are all in this together, and together we can effect positive change.