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Newport council agenda includes fire map, 'lounging' at library

The city's hotel executives also say they want to stop paying taxes on rooms they provide for free, such as to nonprofits and hotel employees.

July 09, 2012|By Mike Reicher

Some Corona del Mar and Newport Coast property owners will be exempt from special building and landscaping requirements if the Newport Beach City Council adopts a revised map outlining areas with high fire risk.

The map is one of the items on Tuesday's 7 p.m. meeting agenda. A study session starts at 4 p.m.

The first map proposed by state fire regulators included the Pelican Hill Resort and Golf Course, all of Newport Coast, Cameo Shores and part of Corona del Mar. After analysis, the Fire Department recommends excluding some of those areas.

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Solutions sought to help problems at library

Library administrators want to restrict people from "lounging" on furniture and limit where people can lock up their bikes, shopping carts and other wheeled belongings.

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The council will review proposed changes to library policy, including a prohibition on "lying down on the furniture or propping feet on chairs, sofas or tables."

Transients often spend the entire day at the library and rest inside. Some also park their shopping carts or bicycles, loaded with personal effects, near the library entrance instead of in designated bike racks.

A staff report says people have complained about the bikes and of people hogging multiple seats. Also, the report says that some of the bikes and carts damage granite walls and plants.

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Council's pay could be changed on charter

The council may vote to change how council members are paid and other provisions of the city charter. In the new charter passage, the council members would be "compensated" instead of "reimbursed."

That is intended to reflect the current policy where council members are reimbursed for expenses while traveling on official business, plus a $15,000 annual stipend — including a $6,000 annual bump for the mayor. They also receive health and retirement benefits.

The Charter Update Committee reviewed about 40 sections of the charter, which was adopted in 1954, and recommended minor and substantial changes. Voters would have to ratify any changes in the November election.

In one suggested change, the Board of Library Trustees would have different powers. Today it has the authority to confirm or deny the appointment, suspension or firing of the library services director. A proposed change would allow the board to advise on those matters, but the ultimate authority would rest with the city manager.

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