EDITOR'S NOTE: First of two parts on Newport Beach's Measure V.
NEWPORT BEACH – Voters reading their ballots for the first time may be surprised to find, after tackling three pages of candidate boxes and state initiatives, a summary of 13 different laws they must decide on in an up-or-down vote.
Then, if they have the time to read closely, they will find the laws are remarkably varied — covering issues from oil drilling to taxation. What they all have in common is that they came from a City Council-mandated reform to the charter, the local constitution in essence. Seven prominent citizens appointed by the City Council studied a specific list of issues with the charter and recommended changes for voters to decide on. The recommendations from this commission were then approved by the City Council and bundled into Measure V.